Rough sleepers hotline: six hours - five people helped

30 Apr 2013
by Neil Skinner

Framework is currently appealing for public support to keep our Rough Sleepers Hotline open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

It’s a life-changing and potentially life-saving tool that has helped hundreds of vulnerable people out of the cold since its launch more than a year ago.

In this blog Street Outreach Team member Eric Revil documents a typical night of calls from the hotline...


A Member of the public calls in to report that they have seen a tent pitched near a public highway.

Outreach teams are sent to the location so that they can assess the occupant and look at the housing options available.

This location is also passed onto the morning outreach team, who can go there in the early hours to check on the occupant’s safety.


A call came in about a 17 year old boy who had been found rough sleeping.

Street outreach where able to contact the local authority on behalf of the young man, and due to his age, he was given a priority for emergency accommodation.

The young man was put up in a B+B and housed by the local authority.


A call came in from the police.

They have been called to a domestic dispute, and one partner has asked the other to leave, leaving them with nowhere to sleep that night.

Street outreach kept in touch throughout the evening, and sent 2 evening outreach workers to the rough sleeping location, where they found the person bedded down.

The outreach workers where then able to book the client into a B+B for the night, under the new “No Second Night Out” Initiative so that referrals could be made to housing aid during office hours the next day. 


A call came in from the security at Queens’s Medical Centre.

A young woman had been discharged, but had nowhere to go.

Outreach workers where sent to meet and assess the young lady within the hour.

During the assessment, it was established that the young lady had been rough sleeping since running away from home.

After mediation with the family over the telephone, SOT established that it was ok for the young lady to return, and funded a taxi to return the girl home to her relieved parents.


A rough sleeper that the team has been working with for a while calls in with their rough sleeping location.

Outreach workers are able to go out to the location in the early hours to check on their safety and arrange a time to meet later in the day, so that housing appointments can be made.

This is just a small summary of one night's activity for the hotline, during which we helped five vulnerbale people through a point of crisis in their lives. With public support we can help many more people in the months and years to come.

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