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Street Assist Project treats over 1,200 patients in the Capital

Posted: 6th March 2018

Street Assist (SCIO) was founded in April 2016 by a group of volunteers who wanted to make a difference at the same time as supporting and assisting people who had become vulnerable through circumstance. The project delivers a non-judgemental, safe environment for people to access during the hours of 10.00pm to 04.00am every Friday and Saturday evening throughout the year, with additional delivery at Christmas and New Year.

The project exists to help support the night-time economy of the City of Edinburgh, including but not exclusively the Emergency Services, providers of night-time recreational activities, the citizens of Edinburgh and its surrounding areas, visitors and tourists who come to the city to sample its culture and heritage; attending the many festivals and events which attract people to the city. We aim to support our emergency services with the view to reducing the number of people attending Accident and Emergency unnecessarily and contributing to the Community Safety Agenda, making Edinburgh a safer city where all people can enjoy its nightlife free from harm.

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The project was originally self funded but such was the success of the project it was decided to apply for SCIO charitable status which was awarded in April 2017. They now have a Board of Trustees who have been appointed to oversee good governance, strategic planning and to make sure the charity develops beyond its original remit.

In May 2017 the project won a tender from Edinburgh City Council Community Safety Partnership to provide a ‘Safe Place’ service to the many people who enjoy the vibrant nightlife within the City of Edinburgh. This support, along with 11,549 volunteer hours,  meant the project was delivered over 125 nights in the past year. Over 1,200 patients were treated in this time, of which 597 were found to be alone.

A recent report commissioned by The Portman Group of ‘Safe Place’ initiatives across the United Kingdom suggested that for every person assisted in a ‘Safe Place’ like Street Assist there was a saving to the public finances of £850.00, meaning the project has delivered an approximate saving of £1,077,800 to our public finances.

Street Assist have 113 registered volunteers of which 75 are regular contributors in donating their time and efforts to ensure we can deliver a robust service week on week. The project aims to support these volunteers with training opportunities to help enhance their personal development and employability prospects. Some of our volunteers already work within the care and medical professions while many are students who wish to gain valuable experience and skills in dealing with the general public with a view to joining the emergency services. With increased funding and new partnerships, we aim to increase the number of training opportunities available to our volunteers.

Our immediate priorities and future development plans can only be achieved if we continue to raise awareness and support for the project. We are looking to interact with funders and the business community in order to achieve our aims and objectives. If you, your company or organisation would like to support the continued development of Street Assist please do contact
us and we will be happy to talk about how you can best support us. Please contact: Neil Logan, Development Manager neil@streetassist.co.uk or by phone; 07876 481989.

 

Business Comment

Business Comment is the Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce’s bi-monthly magazine. It provides insight on Edinburgh’s vibrant business community, with features on the city’s key sectors, interviews with leading figures and news on new business developments in the capital.
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