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Wrexham’s Crisis Cafe

Wrexham’s Crisis Cafe

Wrexham’s Crisis Cafe

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Sinead Kelleher writes about Wrexham's Crisis Cafe, a multi-agency response to Universal Credit. Sinead works for one of our Partner organisations, Kaleidoscope, who are based in Wrexham, North Wales.

The introduction of Universal Credit has proved difficult for clients and those who support them.

In Wrexham, a Crisis Cafe was established to develop a multi-agency approach to helping the most vulnerable access Universal Credit.

Agencies/organisations who attend the weekly Crisis Cafe are:

  • The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP)
  • Local Authority Housing
  • Community Mental Health Team (CMHT)
  • Local Substance Misuse Service (SMS)
  • CAIS - leading voluntary sector provider of personal support services in Wales
  • The Wallich - homeless charity in Wales who give help and advice to homeless and vulnerable people
  • Shelter
  • GP
  • Community Nurses
  • Harm Reduction Team

The multi-agency approach consists of service providers and the DWP working in collaboration with service users to ensure they access benefits quickly, efficiently and appropriately.

Through the Crisis Cafe, the DWP can inform service providers of appointments their clients need to attend, and service providers can then remind clients of any appointments they have.

Service providers are able to act as third party identification confirmants for clients.

This approach has benefitted service providers as well as service users, as service providers are able to appropriately share information and avoid duplication of work.

Kaleidoscope are currently developing a Universal Credit workshop, to take place in their own computer suite, which will allow clients to access their Universal Credit accounts, with the support of a DWP member of staff.

The Crisis Cafe, and the multi-agency approach it has supported, has so far proved successful in helping clients access Universal Credit.

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