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Double accolade for East London homeless charity

Added: (Tue Sep 29 2009)

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25 Sept 2009

DOUBLE ACCOLADE FOR EAST LONDON HOMELESS CHARITY
Praise for use of technology to make lives better


Anchor House, the life-skills centre and refuge for homeless adults, has won recognition for its success in the use of technology and in its financial management.

In the Charity Times 10th anniversary awards, Anchor House beat five other finalists, including Comic Relief, for the best use of technology. Judges said it was “a fantastic example of how the power of technology can be harnessed to make people’s lives better.’

The homeless charity, based in Canning Town, added to its laurels by winning a place among a shortlist of three finalists in the Third Sector Excellence Awards for expertise in financial management.

Director Keith Fernett said: “It’s been an amazing time for the staff and residents here at Anchor House. I am just so proud of all the staff. These results can only feed through into an even better service for our residents. And it’s so good that our many partners and supporters in the community can see that our reputation is growing and their faith in us is being repaid.”

The technology award was given in recognition of the charity’s success in using IT to make the accommodation more secure, to give the residents more independence and to give them better access to information.

Use of technology was a fundamental part of the plan to transform the old basic hostel into a centre to help the homeless develop confidence and self-esteem, and to acquire the skills needed for them to lead independent lives. The IT overhaul included an access-control CCTV system, VOIP telephony, internet access, media services in every room, training facilities and office systems.

“Our residents can, for the first time, use the internet, email and television to follow-up job opportunities and gain greater social stability,” Keith Fernett adds.

Anchor House, which supports 200 unemployed and homeless people a year, prides itself on its businesslike approach in delivering results in a very needy social environment.

Paying close attention to financial management the charity has, since 2005, more than quadrupled its turnover to £3.7 million and has raised £6 million towards its £15.6 million refurbishment plan.

These successes follow acclaim for Anchor House in bringing new ideas to tackling homelessness, recognised when it twice won the Michael Whippman prize for innovation.

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For more about Anchor House see http://www.anchorhouseuk.org
Or contact: Michael Green 07770 440 235 or mail@mhjgreen.com

Anchor House, 81 Barking Road, Canning Town, London E16 4HB

Submitted by:Michael Green
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