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National Hoarding Awareness Week

National Hoarding Awareness Week

Jigsaw Homes is supporting National Hoarding Awareness Week (16 – 20 May 2022) which aims to raise awareness of the risks associated with hoarding and support residents with the disorder.

It is estimated that 1.2 million people in the UK may be affected by hoarding which is commonly mistaken as a disorder purely about collecting items and causing clutter. It is a mental health issue that is normally caused by some kind of trauma and was recognised as such in 2015.

If left untreated it can not only affect the individual and their family, but could make the home unsafe, become a fire risk or cause rodent problems, and potentially damage relations with friends and neighbours.

Jigsaw has an expert Hoarding Specialist, who is currently working with a number of our residents with hoarding behaviours. We take a person centred approach to each individual case with practical hands-on help. It is non-judgmental service which aims to create safe and healthy living environments for the person affected and empower them to make positive behavioural changes to their health and wellbeing.

She said: “As a housing provider, we are constantly finding new ways to help our tenants to combat these behaviours. We understand it’s not as simple as just tidying up the home, decluttering and simplifying the person’s lifestyle. The underlying issue is still there and can return, sometimes worse, as the person is more traumatised by the loss of all their previous collections. We need to work harder with our customers to ensure the underlying trauma is tackled first before we help with the clean up.”

Hoarding can be defined as:

  • Not being able to part with possessions even if they do not have a ‘value’
  • Strong urges to save items
  • Feelings of distress and anxiety about discarding possessions
  • Collecting a large number of possessions that fill up rooms in the home or workplace so they cannot be used for their intended purpose e.g. you can’t cook in the kitchen or sleep in the bedroom.

There are many reasons why people collect; from childhood trauma and isolation to bereavement and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD).

Helping someone to declutter their home while enabling them to access the right psychological support can be of great benefit to everyone involved, as not only does it reduce the safety risk, but it can also help an individual regain their confidence.

If you know someone who could benefit from our expert help please contact us on 0300 111 1212.

There are websites for help and support on hoarding including:

Hoarding UK

Hoarding Disorders UK


Help for Hoarders

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