Sustainable reintegration of homeless people through hygiene and health

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Social mission

Street Nurses NPO contributes to the end of homelessness in Brussels and Liège by accompanying homeless people who are very vulnerable in terms of health towards their reintegration into a stable housing.

Infirmiers de rue Straat verplegstersWhat does Street nurses do?

  • Day-to-day street work - pre-monitoring phase: Street nurses (IDRs) go out on the streets to meet homeless people, try to gain their confidence and motivate them to take care of their hygiene and health. This is the "pre-monitoring" phase during which the team maintains a database that records all information concerning the people seen, met, or identified by other actors who transmit information.

  • Re-housing - follow-up phase: due to limited means, the team cannot intensively follow all recovered homeless people in the database. It is only when a place becomes available (meaning when a person, who the team takes care of, finds suitable accommodation and is stable), that a homeless person whose situation is very vulnerable can enter the monitoring phase. The most vulnerable people do not, or practically do not, have the support of the psycho-socio-medical network. They also have a very low score on the scale of insertion (the scale is called CVC), which takes into account the state of Body, Clothing and Behavior. During this follow-up phase, the team works closely and intensively with its patients on hygiene, medical follow-up, administrative restoration, personal value, and finding suitable accommodations.

  • Creation of a medical and social network - post-monitoring phase: when the patient is stabilized in an accommodation, meaning he is surrounded by a strong support system, he enters the last phase: post-monitoring. During this last phase, IDR creates a real network (medical and social) around the person so that he feels cared for in housing, thus avoiding any relapse. IDR is also building a network of volunteer visitors.

In 2017, approximately 100 patients will benefit from care, more or less intensive according to their needs on behalf of the IDR team. The team will have 35 to 40 people in the "follow-up" phase over the course of 2017. Returning to housing is expected to involve 15-20 patients in 2017.

  • Training of actors likely to be confronted with people in instability:IDR therefore organizes training to prepare and help professionals (nurses and future nurses, social workers, security and cleaning agents, etc.) take charge of this type of patient and to more easily address the issues of hygiene and health. Each year, IDR also conducts awareness sessions with students in nursing schools. In 2017, IDR will provide about 15 training modules, reaching 100 professionals.

  • Creation of information tools: IDR creates tools dsigned to facilitate the spreading of information. IDR has, for example, produced and released plans for drinking water fountains and public toilets in Brussels.

How can you help?

Financial support for :

  • three computers: € 5,580

  • material for the field team: 1500 euros/year 2017

  • financial support for the salary of the team of street nurses: € 990,695 / year 2017

Volunteers in Belgium :

  • Welcome/listen to/care for aid recipients

  • Logistical aid (for moving patients into their new homes)

  • Home improvement (for small jobs in patients’ homes)

  • Fundraising

  • Translation : Dutch/English

  • Webmastering by updating text on the website

Material Needs :

  • technical/administrative

  • hygiene products/maintain upkeep

  • clothing/household linens

  • furniture/appliances


Translated by Natalie Tacy via Translations for Progress

Update 2021
Release by Donorinfo - Last modification : 21/04/2021