Hoarding disorder: tackling the risks, addressing the problem, supporting the person. A learning day for front line professionals who work with hoarders


29 November



Michelle Mundy
Customer Involvement Officer Southern Region, Circle Housing
Dawn Helps
Housing Manager, Circle Housing


November 29, 2017 - 10:15 am


November 29, 2017 - 3:30 pm


Novotel Sheffield Centre, 50 Arundel Gate, Sheffield, S1 2PR   View map


Hoarding is a widespread and costly social problem which impacts upon an extensive range of service providers. Officially recognised in the USA as a mental health disorder, hoarding disrupts normal family life, can lead to extensive damage to property, and creates health and fire risks for neighbours and for the hoarders themselves. The NHS estimates that 2 – 5% of the adult population is a hoarder.

The nature of hoarding means that it usually remains hidden for years and, when discovered, costs local authorities and social housing providers millions each year. Serious hoarders face social isolation, worklessness and eviction. Extreme hoarding can also create child protection risks, and be grounds for the removal of dependent children.

Hoarding means the acquisition of, and inability to throw away, items even though they fulfil no useful purpose or are too numerous to be capable of use. People who hoard often have other social issues and are frequently extremely difficult for services to engage with and can require the lengthy input of multiple agencies.

Tackling hoarding effectively requires the awareness and input of a range of services. Action to address both the risks related to hoarding and the condition itself requires several key elements:

  • A protocol or strategy which sets out the role of each service
  • A proactive plan for identifying hoarders and assessing the extent and nature of their problem
  • A response to the immediate risks and concerns
  • A plan to address the individual’s hoarding disorder and offering ongoing support

This learning day will be facilitated by Michelle Mundy and Dawn Helps from Circle Housing. They have extensive practical experience of working with hoarders, and Michelle authored the Hoarding Protocol adopted by the London Borough of Merton.

Michelle Mundy, a Customer Involvement Officer, and Dawn Helps, a Housing Manager, with Circle Housing will facilitate the day which will focus upon the four elements of tackling hoarding set out in the Background information section.

This will include:

  • brief overview of what hoarding means, its many forms, and why it is a mental health disorder
  • hoarding as part of complex problems
  • tackling hoarding or not – a cost benefit analysis
  • Developing an approach:
    • A strategy or protocol
    • Identifying and assessing hoarders
    • Responding to risks
    • Working with the hoarder in the short and long term
  • where to get information and help


The facilitators will use examples and case studies, during the day and will ensure that participants have the opportunity to ask questions and make comments in all sessions.


Agenda (subject to change)

9.45 – 10.15

Registration and coffee

10.15 – 10.20

Welcome and introduction

10.20 – 10.50

What is hoarding?

  • Definition
  • How important is it to recognise hoarding disorder as a mental health condition?
  • Different forms it can take
  • Who hoards?
  • Why do people start hoarding?
  • Hoarders who have complex needs

10.50 – 11.20

Developing a practical approach to addressing hoarding

  • The cost of NOT doing anything
  • Developing a protocol to bring all services on board

11.20 – 11.40


11.40 – 1.10

Identifying and assessing hoarders

  • Options for identifying hoarders
  • Engaging a hoarder
  • Issues arround mental capacity and deprivation of liberty
  • Assessing the hoarder

1.10 – 2.00


2.00 – 2.45

Responding to hoarding risks

  • What are the risks and for whom?
  • Neighbours and community
  • Bringing in other services
  • Thinking about prevention

2.45 – 3.30

Supporting individuals who are hoarders

  • Self-help groups
  • Ongoing medical support
  • Where to go for information and advice


End of day

  • Social workers
  • Family support workers
  • Children’s charities
  • Environmental health managers
  • Social housing providers
  • Tenancy support workers
  • Voluntary and community organisations
  • Mental health practitioners
  • Community health practitioners such as district nurses, midwives and health visitors
  • Occupational therapists
  • Older people’s services
  • Services for people with learning disabilities
  • Public health specialists
  • Fire services
  • Police

The learning day will take place in central Sheffield.

Novotel Sheffield Centre

50 Arundel Gate

S1 2PR

Tel:  0114 278 1781



From junction 33 of the M1 motorway, turn onto Sheffield Parkway (A630, A57). At the Parkway roundabout take the 4th exit (Commercial Street) and follow the road left onto Arundel Gate, Novotel Sheffield is on the right after 500 metres.

From the railway station, head out the main entrance and then go towards The Howard pub across the roundabout. Continue on Howard Street, past Sheffield Hallam University and then onto Arundel Gate.


Discounted rates are offered to delegates at the nearby Q park, Charles Street Sheffield, S1 2NJ, which is under a 5 minute walk away from the venue.



Rooms are available at the venue from £99 bed and breakfast rate.

The delegate fee:

£130 + VAT per place

A *team deal discount is available when you book 3 or 5 places together

*3 places (3rd place half price) £325 +VAT

*5 places  (5th place free) £520 + VAT

Please ring 0115 9163104 for further information.

The delegate rate includes an information pack, lunch and refreshments throughout the day.


Booking Terms and Conditions

Cancellations received up to and including 8th November 2017 will be refunded in full less an administration fee of 25%. Cancellations received after this date will be liable for payment in full.

*Team deals are not cancellable, but substitute delegates will always be accepted.

The full invoice amount will remain payable if you fail to attend the event, however, substitute delegates will be accepted up until, and including, the day of the event.



Confirmation of booking:

Your booking will be confirmed by email where possible (and by fax or post otherwise), and you will be provided with directions to the venue and details on nearby hotel accommodation. If you do not receive such acknowledgement, please contact Central Conference Consultants Ltd on 0115 916 3104.