How you can help people Rough Sleeping this winter.
With homelessness rising nationally, it is now more visible than ever before. January is to be expected to be the most difficult time of the year for many street sleepers due to being the coldest time of year and the streets being quieter, contributing to feelings of isolation and exclusion.
Have you seen somebody sleeping rough and want to help but you’re not sure how? Follow the tips below to see how you can make a difference to the lives of those sleeping rough in your community.
1. Show Kindness
One way to help someone rough sleeping is by showing kindness. A lot of homeless people feel excluded from society. A smile. A hello, a short chat or gift of a hot drink or food can do wonders for somebody. By recognizing their value as an individual, you could make that person’s day a little bit better when the odds of something nice happening are often stacked against them.
2. Alert our Street Outreach Teams
If you see someone who is sleeping rough, please let our Street Outreach Team know. Our Team works in the early hours of every morning, to identify and engage with people who are rough sleeping. They look for people in well-known sleeping spots, however finding everyone is difficult and they rely on location reports from the public.
Nottingham, Nottinghamshire and Mansfield: 0800 066 5356
Sheffield and Rotherham: 0800 066 5358
The rest of the country: www.streetlink.org.uk
3. Signpost to Day and Night Shelters
The Nottingham Winter Shelter is located at The Emmanuel House Support Centre in Hockley, Nottingham City Centre and is open from November to April providing an essential lifeline to people rough sleeping. The Shelter provides emergency beds, acceptance, physical and emotional support, and encouragement to make positive changes including long-term accommodation solutions.
For location and more information visit: https://www.emmanuelhouse.org.uk/
In Mansfield, there are currently five venues confirmed to host the Winter Night Shelter on a rota basis. For more information visit: www.mansfieldstreetsupport.co.uk
Day centres are open from 9am-5pm at the Cathedral Archer Project and Ben’s Centre. At the centre people who are homeless can access food, clothing, sanitary supplies, sleeping bags, dog food, healthcare, showers, do laundry and have access to the internet.
During extreme weather, overnight accommodation is offered to provide rough sleepers with safety and warmth. Please call Sheffield City Council on 0114 273 6306 during office hours or 0800 7311 698 outside of office hours. If you are calling on somebody’s behalf, please make sure they are with you as personal details about themselves will need to be provided.
In Lincolnshire, the YMCA runs a Night Shelter 365 days a year, open from 8:30pm – 8:30am. For more information visit: www.lincsymca.co.uk/accommodation/night-shelter/
Derby City Mission also operate a team of churches which act as night shelters once a week on a rota’d basis, please visit: www.derbycitymission.org.uk/homeless for more details.
4. Volunteer at Framework
It is both your chance to give something back and to grow personally, professionally and emotionally. It is not about giving something for nothing. It is about giving something and getting much more back in return. There are plenty of opportunities to volunteer within Framework. For more information, visit: www.frameworkha.org/support_us/volunteer/I_want_to_volunteer or call 0115 850 4107 / by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
5. Donate and help our Street How Outreach Team
Our Street Outreach Team and Rough Sleeping hotline is funded entirely by donations, without your support our team would be unable to help people:
- Find safe and secure accommodation
- Find treatment for underlying drug, alcohol and mental health problems
- Secure access to medical help
- Find a way home
The team operate 365 days a year and need your help to continue their incredible work, please donate here: http://bit.ly/2Fkz8YB