Birthday Celebrations At Fazakerley Hostel

A HOSTEL in Fazakerley which helps the homeless turn their lives around celebrated its five-year anniversary last week.Alt Bank House first opened its doors in 2012, replacing the old Field Lane Hostel, also in Fazakerley, which was outdated and no longer fit for purpose.Since then the state-of-the-art scheme, which is run by Liverpool Housing Trust (LHT), has provided temporary accommodation to hundreds of homeless people before helping them move on to permanent homes.To mark the special occasion staff and residents got together for a celebratory birthday bash, which included an X-Factor style talent competition.Emma El Wakil, team leader at Alt Bank House, said: “We are incredibly proud of the work that has been achieved over the last five years, and the difference it has made to so many lives.“Since moving to Alt Bank House we have not only benefited from fantastic facilities, but have also developed the service we provide.“We have got to a point now where residents are leaving Alt Bank House with more skills, more confidence and more independence.”The hostel has been a lifeline for 29-year-old tenant Jane (not her real name), who moved to the UK from Sudan in 2004.Jane, who has been living at Alt Bank House for 18 months, said: “The staff have put me in touch with social services and supported me to access other services so that I can move forward.“It’s nice and clean, there’s lots of support if you need it and, most importantly for me, I know that I’m in a safe environment.”Now Jane is looking to find her own flat and, with help from the staff at Alt Bank House, has enrolled on a beauty therapy course at The Recovery College in Walton.She added: “I feel like I’ve come such a long way since I’ve been here. The plan is to get a flat once all my paperwork is sorted and I’ll be ready to move on.”Alt Bank House currently houses 42 single homeless men and women in modern self-contained flats, and also provides support and access to facilities including an IT suite, kitchens, allotments, health services, specialist agencies and colleges to enable people to make the transition to a settled home.