So, you want to support a homeless charity? But which one do you choose?
After all, there are a lot of groups out there who all seem to do the same thing.
However, delve a little bit deeper and you’ll find that each one, while aiming to put an end to homelessness, has its own approach to the crisis.
Here, we give the lowdown on seven charities aiming to change the lives of the homeless.
Centrepoint is the leading charity that works with the young homeless to not only ensure they have somewhere to live, but that they also have a future. It provides accommodation, health support, and life skills with the aim of getting homeless people aged between 16 and 25 back into education, training, and employment. But the charity’s ambitions go beyond providing for the immediate future. Centrepoint has set a goal to end youth homelessness by the year 2037, and to help them succeed it has appointed two influential chairs to the Growth Board; Javad Marandi and Jamie Reuben who will establish and grow the board recruiting top-level public and private sector support for the project. At the heart of this initiative Centrepoint is building affordable modular housing and creating the infrastructure to ensure that once homeless young people are off the streets they can find work and also pay for their accommodation.
Homeless charity Crisis helps people rebuild their lives by providing mental health support, professional courses, and guidance on finding accommodation with the long-term goal of everyone having a safe place to call home.
You can provide support through its ‘Art from Crisis’ scheme in which subscribers get a unique, premium-quality A5 art card every month. Each one comes with a compelling insight into how the artwork was created, from someone who is experiencing or at risk of homelessness.
Crisis at Christmas is especially relevant at this time of the year because it gives homeless people a roof over their head and provides Christmas dinner and companionship over the festive season. However, it is also a way of offering other services that can be their first steps out of homelessness.
This UK charity works with young homeless people, providing wide-ranging and flexible services so they can give each the support they need to address their specific challenges.
It supports young people who have been homeless as well as those who are at risk of becoming homeless in a number of ways. For example, Depaul offers accommodation, support, and mediation to keep families together when relationships break down. It also employs Progression Coaches to work alongside young people and empower them to live independently.
Emmaus understands that when people are homeless they can lose their self-esteem. By offering them a home for as long as they need it within an Emmaus community, they give time to those individuals so they can take stock of their lives, deal with any issues they might have, and often re-establish relationships with loved ones.
- St Mungo’s
For more than 50 years, St Mungo’s has been at the forefront of efforts to tackle homelessness. Each night, it sends 17 outreach teams out to help people sleeping rough to move away from the streets and provide a bed and support to over 3,150 people. They also work to prevent homelessness and support people at every step of their recovery from homelessness.
Shelter is a charity very much focused on finding people a home, or preventing them from losing theirs in the first place. It is a good port of call if you have a housing problem, are facing eviction or are homeless. It will offer help and practical guidance, including free legal advice.
The charity also fights for better investment in housing, and for laws and policies to improve the lives of homeless and badly housed people.
StreetLink connects people sleeping rough to those who can help them. Basically, a homeless person or member of the public can contact StreetLink with details about a rough sleeper’s location and general appearance and then the correct, independent local homelessness outreach team will be alerted. StreetLink also finds out what has happened as a result of the alert within 14 days and, if requested, provides the member of the public with an update.