When you join our community and become an Emmaus companion, you are provided with an individual bedroom, all meals provided in a communal dining room, and normal living expenses. There is no time limit on this support, and our experience shows us that this stability helps people to rebuild their lives following homelessness.
Our companions enjoy a range of social activities together and have access to a companion training fund.
To be accepted at Emmaus Hertfordshire, you’ll need to sign off all benefits, with the exception of Housing Benefit which goes to Emmaus Hertfordshire and helps to fund the community home.
Most people stay at Emmaus Hertfordshire for a few months but some leave after a short time and others stay for years.
Emmaus is not about hand-outs, it’s about providing people with the tools to help themselves. This approach has been proven to produce long-term, sustainable results. For the many people who have been stuck in a cycle of homelessness, Emmaus provides the space and support they need to take stock of their lives and make positive changes for the future.
As a working community, all companions living at Emmaus Hertfordshire are required to work in one of our social enterprises and within our community.
This could be working in one of our second-hand shops, gardening, maintenance, van driving, collection and deliveries, stock sorting, kitchen work, upcycling, upholstery, and supporting with our eBay shop.
Research conducted by Emmaus UK shows that 79% of people who have lived at Emmaus for a few months say that working and having something to do every day has been the most beneficial part of their experience.
All companions living at Emmaus Hertfordshire receive training in health and safety, manual handling, food hygiene and other subjects as relevant.
Opportunities are provided to access other courses and people can apply for the Emmaus UK Companion Training Fund to help cover the costs. This could include funding for driving lessons, cookery classes, HGV driving courses, IT equipment for training, and purchasing equipment for move-on work opportunities.
Companions can also take on positions of responsibility within the community such as team leaders, duty team members and community assistants.
Some people also choose to gain experience in the PAT testing room to test donations of electrical items or restore donated furniture in the workshop.