In March, GCP staff and members of our Ending Destitution Together Group attended the No Accommodation Network (NACCOM) annual conference, which promotes shared learning and good practice amongst members.

The Guardian’s Social Policy Editor, Patrick Butler, was the keynote speaker who talked about the current political and media context surrounding refugee and migration issues.  He discussed the important role journalism can play in highlighting injustice and inequality and promoting compassion instead of hostility.

Other speakers included Reneae Mann, from the Refugee Council, Eiri Ohtani from Right to Remain, and Sonia Lenegan, Editor of Free Movement and asylum and public law solicitor. Participants had the opportunity to take part in workshops on themes such as setting up and diversifying housing models, working with people with complex needs, setting up and running lodgings schemes for newly granted refugees , safeguarding support in storytelling and working with the media, influencing in a general election year and building lived experience representation.

Wellbeing was a large feature of the day with all participants enjoying some amazing food and taking part in various mindfulness activities throughout the day.

We asked our group members to tell us the key things they took away from the conference:
● Importance of raising awareness/education
● The power in tackling challenges together
● No one deserves to be homeless, humanity and collaboration is so important
● Planning, mitigation and advocacy are key factors for influencing change

Feedback from our group members on their attendance was very positive and they felt the quality of the keynote speakers was very high.

One group member said: “It was a good experience to attend this kind of conference for the first time outside of Scotland. It was good from a learning point of view, to understand housing issues and case studies. Very practical approaches and we made good relationships with other organisations.”


Subscribe to our seasonal newsletter.