In late January/early February 2017, The NSMC piloted a night-time Help Point in central Hastings designed to reduce the number of minor alcohol-related injuries and provide a refuge for vulnerable people.

Over 50 people used the service over the two nights. Some came in to sober up and take a break from drinking while others were treated by St John Ambulance staff for issues ranging from ankle injuries to severe alcohol intoxication.  We also helped members of the street community with warm drinks and clothing on two particularly cold and wet winter nights.

Our partners, the Street Pastors played a vital role by bringing vulnerable people to the Help Point and supplying us with flip flops that we could give away to women who were no longer able to walk in their heels. Bar door staff also referred a number of severely intoxicated young people to the Help Point for treatment.

Although the service was designed to close at 4 a.m. we stayed open until 5 a.m. which made for a really late finish especially when we then had to drive back to London.  Still it was all worthwhile as the pilots were judged a great success and users were really appreciative of the help provided. One user said:

“Thanks for the tea. I appreciate all you do as a team. Keep it up!”

We are now looking forward to helping our various partners take this pilot project onto the next stage of development.