New currency to help homeless: Spice Time Credits and NHS launch project with St Mungo’s Hostel in Hackney

Spice has launched a brand new NHS project with St Mungo’s hostel in Hackney. Find out how Time Credits are helping people affected by homelessness develop peer support, self management and independence.

Homelessness is a growing issue in London. BBC3’s recent documentary Hidden and Homeless highlights the shocking statistics, outcomes, and living environments facing people living on the streets.

Without a home, a support network, and a stable income people affected by homelessness face some of the worst health outcomes in the UK. The average age of death for rough sleepers in the UK is estimated to be around 40.5 years of age (CHAIN, 2015).

City and Hackney CCG has funded a one year Time Credits Project with Spice and St Mungo’s to work directly with residents to identify barriers to improving health outcomes and access to health services, and develop new ways to manage health and well-being in a complex needs hostel.

Why Time Credits?

Time. Everyone wakes up with time in their pocket, no matter what your background, skills or experience. So why not build an economy where time is shared and exchanged to develop your community, and opens up new opportunities to all?

At Spice, we believe that everyone’s time is valuable, and we want to harness people’s experience and skills to shape their own service & community.

So far, residents at St Mungo’s hostel in Hackney have already volunteered over 100 hours by setting up activities, cooking, tidying communal areas and writing articles. Some have facilitated peer support sessions, and some have workshopped ideas on the physical design of the City and Hackney Time Credit note. Residents picked colours, images and buildings that represented Hackney and the hostel for them.

On Thursday 25th February, the City and Hackney Time Credit note was unveiled at the Mare Street hostel. Read the writeup in the Hackney Gazette.

London street artist Stik, whose artwork features on the note design, shares his thoughts on the new Time Credit note:

“I am honoured that the residents of St Mungo’s have elected to feature my artwork on the new Time Credit Note. I lived in the Mare Street hostel a few years ago. They understood that street art was an important part of my recovery and didn’t ask too many questions when I came back at night covered head to toe in paint. The hugging image used on the note represents time spent with loved ones in times of struggle.”

Get involved

  • Follow us on Twitter and Facebook to keep up to date with news on City and Hackney Time Credits
  • Interested in finding out about being a spend partner in Hackney? Contact Sami Brar, Partnerships Manager for London & the South East, samibrar@justaddspice.org or 07429 257 581.