Established in 2018, Hammersley Homes is a charity that aims to provide a home for life, for adults suffering from enduring mental illness – specifically those whose condition cannot be cured, those who will not recover.
Recreational drugs are now recognised as being a significant contributor to the development of psychosis, and as the consumption of these increases, so do mental health problems.
Following the introduction of the “Care in the Community” initiative in the 1980’s, many of the residences, homes and hospital wards that accommodated adults who suffered from enduring mental illness have been closed, and the closures continue. Now, all too frequently, these unfortunate and vulnerable people live alone, often in chaos and unable to manage; or they are homeless; or live with family who one day won’t be there for them. They live too often without friends or a sense of community, a sense of purpose – things we all need for our general wellbeing.
One of the characteristics that seems to set many of these people apart, is the broken link between an action and a consequence; a link that we all take very much for granted. Frequently they cannot understand that if they do this, that might happen. They tend to behave and act very much in the “now”, without the ability to think about the future or of the possible consequences of their behaviour. It’s a symptom of the disease. So all too often, they end up in prison through no fault of their own – rather due to the effect of the disease – for reasons that they don’t at all understand. And our prisons are already horribly overcrowded – largely with unfortunate people who suffer from chronic mental ill-health. We want to do all we can to keep these people safe, and out of prison.