Renovation of the ACISMOM Day Care Centre for Homeless People in Rome, Italy

Project location: ITALY, Rome
Project start date: June 2021 - Project end date: June 2022
Project number: 2021-003
Beneficiary: Associazione Dei Cavalieri Italiani Del Sovrano Militare Ordine Di Malta

The homeless day centre the Associazione Dei Cavalieri Italiani Del Sovrano Militare Ordine Di Malta (ACISMOM) is planning will be within a facility owned by the Order of Malta. This building, before the renovation (which ACISMOM is taking care of), was generally not in good condition, there were many parts of the roof terrace that showed infiltrations with consequences of severe degradation of the floor below. So, it was necessary to intervene in most of the building.
Covering terrace: demolition of the crumbling floor, of the underlying screed and waterproofing. Complete renovation of the flooring, waterproofing and plastering of the perimeter walls. A new water and electricity line is also provided and two heat pump refrigeration units with gas refrigerant fluid are installed in the central zone. Supply and assembly of a single central heating plant for domestic hot water composed of n. 3 gas water heaters of 26 lt/min each, cascade assembly of the 3 apparatuses.
First floor: geometric remodelling of the rooms with the demolition of some plasterboard walls. Reconstruction of other walls necessary for the realization of the volunteer reception rooms, offices of various sizes, meeting rooms, new bathrooms and adaptation of the existing one for disabled people. Complete renovation of both the electrical system (with new LED lighting) and emergency, water and gas. In addition, an air conditioning system with 17 internal units with a heat pump has been provided for all the rooms.
Ground Floor: new geometry of the rooms with the demolition of some walls and reconstruction of others, the realization of two groups of services with n.8 showers separated between them with modular panels in HPL composite, foot height about 10 cm and full-height doors. Raising of the floor of the whole area, with materials left over from the roofing and the realization of a stabilization screed, for a height of 15 cm for the realization of the water adduction and drainage systems, the realization of a laundry room and adaptation of a bathroom for disabled people. Complete renovation of the electrical system with the implementation of new electrical panels to make the system compliant and certifiable.
Work has begun as scheduled. 
The renovation of the terrace has been completed and has been given priority, for obvious reasons of deterioration, in order to proceed with the internal work with peace of mind. All the water-sanitary systems of supply and drainage have been completed and the systems for the distribution of air conditioning are well underway.
It has been expressly requested to provide for some additional works, in particular:
1) Construction of a technical compartment to conceal from view the plant machinery on the roof;
2) Flooring of the entire second floor;
3) Laying of skirting boards on all the vertical walls of the second floor and two-tone painting (red/white) of the walls of the common areas;
The Day Centre for Homeless is a comprehensive and dynamic support program that provides opportunities for marginalized people. Every individual is welcomed and expected every day and she/he is considered a fundamental part of a community engaged in this important work.
The structure around which the daily activity is organized is the responsibility of the members of the Order of Malta, staff and volunteers who work side by side in a rehabilitative environment.
The methodology underlying the design provides for the creation of a warm, safe, non-judgmental environment with well-trained staff and volunteers to engage with guests and form professional relationships.
These relationships will promote growth in guests’ self-esteem, confidence, and aspirations.
The basis of its approach is to provide information, support and, where necessary, practical help that will empower people to make and act on informed choices.
Staff and volunteers will offer activities within the centre which are likely to enhance guests’ skills and raise self-confidence as a first step towards changing their lives.
The aim is to encourage and empower guests to become involved in the running of the centre, and in forums designed to give service users a voice.
The daily activities are managed by the order’s volunteers. They are organized on shifts for 4 days a week from morning to afternoon. Volunteers are responsible for welcoming people and accompanying them to the services offered. Among the volunteers, the Order of Malta guarantees specialists such as doctors and psychologists.
The project will be supervised by a staff member of the Order of Malta who refers to the project coordinator.

This projecr received a grant from the Nando and Elsa Peretti Foundation to promote wellbeing and improved quality of life among homeless people by assuring access to high‐quality, comprehensive health care and support services to facilitate the transition out of homelessness.
Specific Objectives:

  • ensure access to basic health services, including showers and laundry facilities
  • ensure access to medical and psychological care within the centre
  • increase the social and professional skills of the beneficiaries through individual and group paths

SERVICES
S.O. 1
1.1 SHOWER SERVICE
Low-threshold service 4 days per week. It allows beneficiaries to maintain a constant state of hygiene. 
Beneficiaries will have at their disposal a hygienic kit consisting of soap, toothbrush, toothpaste, towels, underwear, and a token that will be used to activate the hot water and wash. 
The environment will be divided between men and women, allocating a shower room for people with disabilities.
Access: by reservation online or on-site // Timing: 30min shifts (5 min preparation, 2*5min water, 10 min drying and dressing, 5 min cleaning by volunteers)
1.2 LAUNDRY
         laundry service is meant to emphasize how important it is for users to regain and maintain a minimum level of autonomy. It is open 4 days per week.
Washing machines, dryers and detergents will be available for all those who wish to do laundry. Access: by reservation online or on-site // Timing: 2-hour shifts (1h washing 1h drying)
1.3        BARBER/HAIRDRESSER
       service available 1 to 2 days per week based on staff availability
S.O. 2
2.1          MEDICAL CHECKS (when fully operational we will be able to start with this service)
The Order of Malta’s medical doctors will guarantee primary preventive care aimed to prevent the occurrence of disease. The medical room will be open one day a week.
A central database will maintain a record of health care for each patient, allowing to generate reports showing demographic information, conditions treated, and health services provided. Such recordkeeping is necessary for two reasons: 1) It facilitates efficient health care delivery and 2) It gathers data needed to guide understanding of client needs and to report to funding entities

2.2      PSYCHOLOGICAL COUNSELLING
The psychologists of the Order of Malta will guarantee support through individual and group paths. The psychologist's room will be open one day a week.
The stress of experiencing homelessness may encourage anxiety, fear, depression, sleeplessness, and substance use. The support of specialized staff can both prevent more acute disorders and help beneficiaries regain self-esteem and basic skills.

S.O. 3
3.1          TISANERIE
An informal and welcoming waiting place that leaves space and time to read, to have a hot tea, to chat with volunteers. In this place, the beneficiaries can both have time to socialize and wait for the shift for the doctor or the psychologist as well as for their laundry to be ready. In addition, this is a place where workshops and thematic meetings will be held.
SMOM volunteers have several backgrounds. Their expertise will be made available to the beneficiaries in two ways:

3.2         THEMATICS MEETINGS (when fully operational we will be able to start with this service)

Meetings are organized in groups twice a month. Topics will be:
Legal aspects to support homeless (managed by voluntary lawyers).
The world of work, how to write a CV.
Good hygiene practices.
The network of services on the territory. Establishing an extensive, reliable referral network is necessary to provide a comprehensive array of services needed by a homeless population.    
WORKSHOPS (when fully operational we will be able to start with this service)
workshops are organized in groups twice a month. The aim is to develop their skills, to build confidence and to increase wellbeing, all of which help them to start to think and plan more positively for their future. 
These meetings can be about art, crafts, cinema, culture and much more.

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