Who is St Bartholomew’s House?
St Bartholomew’s House [St Bart’s] assists people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness achieve positive life outcomes.
Our Vision is to eliminate homelessness.
Our Mission is to assist the homeless of today to rebuild their lives, and act to prevent the homelessness of tomorrow.
How will this project help you achieve your mission and vision?
St Bart’s recognises the harm caused by smoking and the links between smoking and disadvantage. Many of the people that access St Bart’s services come from various backgrounds with a history of trauma and disadvantage.
The majority of the people that come to St Bart’s are smokers. Smoking has big environmental, health and monetary risks so we have partnered with the Cancer Council WA to reduce these risks by promoting smoke-free environments, supporting people towards healthier smoking behaviours and assisting people on their journey towards reducing and quitting smoking. This all works towards our mission of assisting people experiencing homelessness and achieving positive life outcomes for the people at St Bart’s.
What difference will this project make for:
1. People accessing St Bart’s services?
This project has given people accessing St Bart’s services the opportunity to re-evaluate their smoking behaviours and the motivation to make a change. Residents are feeling more supported and able to move towards wanting to change. It has encouraged people to take that first step towards reducing or quitting smoking. The Healthy Lungs Project has also reduced the financial burden and given people the opportunity to try quitting products to aid their quitting attempts.
2. Staff at St Bart’s?
Since starting this project, staff have received training by the Cancer Council WA and feel more equipped to support people within St Bart’s to manage their smoking or move towards reducing and quitting smoking. Incidentally, some staff have also reconsidered their smoking behaviours and subsequently reduced or quit smoking. The environment in which staff are working has also become safer with more promotion of smoke-free areas and an increased awareness of the harms of secondhand smoke.
Greatest learnings and achievements?
Thanks to a generous donation, St Bart’s has been able to offer the Healthy Lungs Project, which has come out of the Make Smoking History Project. Through the Healthy Lungs Project, St Bart’s has offered free quitting products to people interested in reducing or quitting. As of December 2018, two people had quit and several others had reduced their smoking.
One of the success stories is Bernie, who was able to quit through the Healthy Lungs Project.
“The project offered me a chance to finally tackle the worst of my addictions - smoking”, Bernie says.
Through the project, Bernie has saved enough money to insure her car and purchase a laptop, with the intention to further her studies in the future.
Bernie says, “My new lease on life is a gift that has been given to me; another chance at a healthier life. I feel healthier in general and my breathing is quiet again”. Bernie is very thankful to everyone involved in this project, for without it she would not be smoke-free.
“It was a collaborative effort because I could not have done it by myself”. One of the greatest learnings from this project is that people want to and can quit smoking, and now, St Bart’s is in a much better position to support people to do.
Click on each of the priority areas below to find out what St Bart’s is achieving.
Comprehensive tobacco policy
- Review and update the tobacco policy.
- Provide more smoke-free areas within all services, with the goal of working towards becoming smoke-free.
Organisational culture and values
- Incorporate smoking cessation support as part of existing groups or resident / tenant meetings across all services.
- Include smoking cessation support in the Health Promotion Program and provide one-on-one support as part of the Health Promotion role (for Mental Health Support Services only).
- Create an opportunity / space where people can publicly and visually display their goals and achievements to reduce and quit smoking as part of existing groups and resident / tenant meetings, in organisational communications, and/or display walls.
- Develop smoke-free signage with positive messaging that resembles St Bart’s values.
- Refurbish areas where people used to smoke to make them more appealing and signify change, including creating a vegetable patch.
- Increase recreational activities, including physical (i.e. walking groups) and social (i.e. competitions between services) to replace smoking.
- Provide people with a distraction from smoking by providing a program that explores the Act-Belong-Commit message.
Staff learning and development
- Ensure all staff receives brief intervention training.
- Build brief intervention training into staff induction process.
Organisational process and procedures
- Include prompts in entry and exit documentation to encourage all residents to be asked about their smoking and offered support to reduce and quit.
- Case Management meetings and Key Work sessions will include reducing and quitting smoking in Outcomes / Recovery Stars.
- Free quitting products are available for residents through the Healthy Lungs Project.
- Build information about smoking into rights and responsibilities process for resident induction, and into first Case Management meeting or Key Work session, including smoke-free environments, where people can get support to reduce and quit, and why St Bart’s is addressing smoking.
- Incorporate support for staff to reduce and quit smoking into recruitment / induction processes.
- Include prompt in staff monthly supervision meetings to raise awareness amongst staff about the support services available to help them reduce and quit smoking.
Monitoring, evaluation and learning
- Include questions related to tobacco use in existing resident databases, entry and exit documentation, etc.
- Include questions related to tobacco use in staff annual survey.
- Inform St Bart’s stakeholders about the Make Smoking History project, including Homeless Healthcare, REACH, Street to Home, Allied Health and external services that residents are referred to (i.e. Foundation Housing, 50 Lives 50 Homes, hostels, private rentals, etc.).
- Include updates on the project in internal and external organisational communications, including CEO email, Annual Report, Facebook, website, e-news, etc.
- Explore opportunities to present on the Make Smoking History Project at conferences and events to share the experiences of St Bart’s.
- Identify opportunities to integrate people’s stories of reducing and quitting into the story telling initiatives St Bart’s is undertaking.