Yarmouth homeless charity enlarges its vision
The Living Room charity in Great Yarmouth is expanding the services it provides to homeless people in the borough, and is asking for the support from the local community.
Since the Covid-19 pandemic there has been less demand for the traditional 'night-shelter' services which The Living Room previously provided. This has largely been due to the council receiving funding to provide emergency accommodation for more people.
However, the needs of people who are or have been homeless have not gone away. In conjunction with other organisations and people with lived experience of homelessness, the charity, which had been set up by Christians in Yarmouth, has identified the following areas of ongoing need:
A day-time shelter for people who are rough-sleeping or struggling to be placed in permanent accommodation, and those new to accommodation
Laundry and shower facilities
Practical and emotional support for people who are new to accommodation and independent living
Friendship and relational networks for the above groups.
An advocate for above groups, including support in meetings and signposting.
Anna Heydon, from The Living Room, says “One of the benefits of being a smaller charity is the ability to adapt and change according to local needs and resources. The Living Room is doing just that. Having started out as a night shelter in 2017, The Living Room is now expanding its vision.”
The proposed solution is a Drop-in for those who are long-term homeless or currently rough sleeping, including light refreshments but not a meal. The focus will be relational, and might involve board games etc. Agency staff will be invited for the purpose of building relationships, but the atmosphere will be friendly and informal.
There would also be a Drop-in for those who are about to be moved to more stable accommodation, newly in accommodation, or at risk of losing accommodation. This would be similar to the other drop-in but with the possibility of occasional visiting speakers based on interests of the group or developing their skills, Individual support from employee / volunteers in developing friendships and interest groups, budgeting, attending appointments etc.
In the longer term it is hoped to provide access to laundry and shower facilities at the drop-in location.
Anna says, “We are very fortunate to have built up good relationships with volunteers and local organisations over the last 5 years. To continue and expand our work we are going to need people to support, give, volunteer, pray, lead. Please talk to us about how you might be involved. Contact email@example.com .”
Visit : thelivingroom.co.uk
This story and the photo are based on an article from Imagine Norfolk Together (Great Yarmouth).
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