Talitha Koum Residential Service Update


Suffolk-based charity, Talitha Koum (TK), working to help vulnerable women break free from addictions and other life challenges, today announced a major change to its residential service offering at the Hope Centre.

Clinical Rehab Service Realigned

TK had hoped to welcome the first women into the Hope Centre for clinical residential rehab in November 2017 following approval from the Care Quality Commission. Contacts with over 150 public health commissioners and drug and alcohol teams throughout England revealed a deepening crisis in residential rehab funding (see editors notes) and a resulting lack of referrals. Despite this, commissioners remained enthusiastic about the TK offering, and TK was able to offer a subsidy to the cost of our service thanks to generous supporters. After receiving a small number of referrals, TK had planned to welcome the first group of women in February this year. However, plans were halted after the charity identified that some of the women who were to be admitted were doing so well with community treatment (including support from the TK community outreach team) that it would not be in their best interests to come to the Hope Centre at that time. As a result, TK did not have the necessary minimum number of residents for effective group sessions, etc. and cuts in funding meant there were few, if any, in prospect. It therefore and took the tough decision to postpone the first admissions.

Strategic Review

Discussions with other residential rehab service providers revealed that many others were struggling due to significant cuts in public funding. The situation is far different to that when the TK residential offering was first planned in 2010 and has worsened significantly in the last year. Costs for the specialist 24×7 team required to provide safe and effective primary care residential rehab have also grown and are affecting the viability of some providers. Some had been forced to close, and others have switched to a greater level of private funding (where residents or their families pay many thousands of pounds for treatment), but this did not sit well with our charity’s ethos.

Local and national charities continue to tell us there is a desperate need for low-cost supported residential accommodation for vulnerable women – women who are in recovery from addictive behaviours, who are victims of abuse or exploitation, and who face other life challenges. These are needs that the TK team and the Hope Centre are uniquely able to meet.

TK will therefore now focus our residential programme on a non-clinical therapeutic community for vulnerable women.

Those who require primary clinical rehab will be able to receive this though partner charities with whom we are working and will be able to come to the Hope Centre after completing the clinical rehab programme at these other centres.

Speaking about the change in strategy, Ken Donaldson, Project Director, said: “Our revised residential offering allows us to help more women, with a wider range of requirements, particularly for supported housing. This realignment means we can support more local women than originally envisaged. We hope to welcome women into the Hope Centre by early June. Our supporters and volunteers, and people throughout Suffolk, can be rightly proud of what has been achieved so far. Our Women Together community groups and support work have already helped more than 100 women in Ipswich on their recovery journeys, transforming many lives and making a real difference. And we now have a first-class residential centre ready to welcome vulnerable women.”

Chair of Trustees, Michael Clark added: “The delays in launching our residential offering are disappointing for everyone involved – especially for the women we aim to help. But in a very poor economic climate for charities, it was quite an achievement to complete the first phase of the construction project thanks entirely to our supporters, volunteers and financial donors. We are incredibly grateful to the Suffolk community for their support and trust, and we ask for your continued support and prayers as we welcome vulnerable women into the Hope Centre.”

Details of the TK residential offering, set out on our website, follow below.

TK Supported Residential Community for Vulnerable Women

Life can be tough. We’re here to help

We know life can be tough and sometimes you need a little help to get back on your feet. Whether you’re struggling with addictive behaviours, a survivor of violence or abuse, or looking to overcome another challenge in life, TK is ready to help you realise your potential and live your life in freedom.

The Hope Centre, set in 2-acres of beautiful Suffolk countryside, offers a confidential, safe and supportive environment to help you to make the life-changes you desire. Whether you need a few weeks respite accommodation or a few months to make a transformational change, you’ll receive personalised support to meet your needs. You’ll be part of a caring community of up to 7 women with diverse backgrounds, challenges and talents. You’ll have the privacy of your own en-suite bedroom and you’ll be able to eat and relax together as a group. You’ll be expected to participate in daily chores and follow the house rules which are there for the protection of all residents. For example, no alcohol is allowed on site for the benefit of those recovering from addictions. Residents can participate in a daily programme of activities at the Hope Centre and or take the scheduled transport into Ipswich during the day for work, education, therapeutic activities or other appointments. Visitors are only allowed by appointment. A specialist team will support you, so you can enjoy active, healthy, holistic and happy living.

To find out if the Hope Centre is right for you, why not call us to arrange a visit and see the Centre for yourself?

Talitha Koum Community

Talitha Koum (TK) is Suffolk-based charity working to help women break free from addictions and other life challenges. The charity has been running “Women Together” recovery groups and providing community support in locations across Ipswich since 2014. By April 2018 over 100 women had been helped by the Women Together groups and team. TK received planning permission to build a first-class residential therapeutic centre in 2010 and the first phase of the building was completed in 2017 providing 7 bedrooms with a shared lounge, dining room and therapeutic facilities.

For further information on the Talitha Koum project please contact Ken Donaldson on 01473 857432 or 07935 058685 or e-mail ken.donaldson@talithakoum.org.uk