Homeless hostel showcases film project success

Evesham Journal: Left to right: Gerry Lowman, Gareth Jones, Ray Morgan, Worcester MP Robin Walker, West Mercia's Police and Crime Commissioner Bill Longmore and Paul Manley. Left to right: Gerry Lowman, Gareth Jones, Ray Morgan, Worcester MP Robin Walker, West Mercia's Police and Crime Commissioner Bill Longmore and Paul Manley.

A NUMBER of films shot by homeless people were showcased during a grand event.

St Paul's Hostel in Tallow Hill has been running its Creative Group for the past three years and its members were invited by the Mayor of Worcester, cllr Par Agar, to present their work in front of a number of dignitaries at the Guildhall in Worcester.

Their work was warmly received by an audience that included the deputy mayor, cllr Paul Denham, the city's MP Robin Walker and West Mercia's Police and Crime Commissioner on Wednesday, April 16.

They were supported in their efforts by former University of Worcester student Matt Worthington who re-edited the films, which spanned a variety of styles, in his role as editor.

Gerry Lowman, a teacher of literacy and numeracy and co-ordinator of the group, said: "None of the films would have been completed without his help and he joined the group two years ago whilst still at the university.

"Matt has since set up his own enterprise, Storm Videos, and we wish him every success - he is very talented and committed to his work."

The group originally arose naturally from individuals receiving literacy and numeracy support at the hostel who showed they had many creative talents which could be used to help themselves and highlight the work to support people moving forward with their lives.

They are currently working on two documentary films, with the first one recording the development at Heenan Court which is intended to provide 16 bed accommodation for clients in need of continuing support before being able to live independently.

The second project focusses on the Good Soil project which forms part of the hostel's life skills projects and takes place at Top Barn Farm, near Worcester, to teach people the life and social skills to enable them to move forwards and re-integrate back into the local community.

The hostel provides 46 beds for single homeless people within the city and wider Worcestershire as well as operating a dry house, a substance misuse service for street drinkers, rough sleeper outreach, resettlement services and the Worcestershire LinkUp gateway service.

For more information, go to stpaulshostel.co.uk.

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