Jon Kuhrt is greatly experienced in all sorts of homelessness and is a government adviser on rought sleeping. Every faith organisation involved with these issues should read this article, especially noting what Jon says about ‘organisational humility’.
When it comes to addressing homelessness and the issues surrounding it, partnerships and joint work between organisations is absolutely vital.
This is because no one comes off the streets into accommodation through the work of just one agency. Successful progress is almost always a team effort involving a host of different agencies. It is their combined work which makes the difference.
The barriers to joint work
In order to improve relationships between agencies, we need to name some of barriers which often exist. In my experience these factors are common:
Contrasting cultures. Often ‘professional’ agencies and the faith/community-based groups use language that can be alien to the other. They use different acronyms, different forms of bureaucracy and a different emphasis in how they deal with people. Negative judgements easily form around differences.
Promotion and pride. Part of the reality of fundraising is promoting your organisation and the
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