Friday 14 June 2024
11.2 C
Nottingham

Emmanuel House reopens 24-hour Winter Shelter at University Park

Nottingham homelessness charity Emmanuel House Support Centre is delighted to confirm the re-opening of its Winter Shelter on the University of Nottingham’s University Park.

From Monday 17th October, the charity will offer short-term emergency accommodation for up to 27 people per night until April 2023. 24-hour support will be provided in an unused university building, ensuring there are fewer people sleeping on the streets of Nottingham.

Denis Tully, CEO at Emmanuel House, said:

“As we enter our second season working with the university, we are delighted to be benefitting from their generous offer of accommodation at a cost-neutral rate.

“The Winter Shelter will provide what we anticipate as much-needed respite accommodation for people who would otherwise rough sleep during the coldest and wettest months of the year.

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“Staff and volunteers have been working hard to get everything in place in the venue on the University of Nottingham campus.

“The Winter Shelter is not an end in itself, but a means of supporting people into more permanent accommodation solutions.”

Ashley Roberts, Head of Campus Services, is leading the project. He said: “It’s fantastic to be able to work with Emmanuel House again this year and put an otherwise empty property to good use.

“Last winter it was great to see the university community coming together to support the charity, with lots of donations and volunteers offering their time to help in the shelter.

“I’m sure our staff and students will get behind Emmanuel House once again this winter and make it a successful partnership.”

The Winter Shelter offers 24-hour access, which allows support work to continue during the day as guests are helped to find work, long-term accommodation, access to other services and three meals a day.

University of Nottingham Students’ Union Community Officer Daisy Forster said: “It’s amazing to see the university helping the community in such an active way, especially when it is such an important time to give back.

“Students are a remarkable asset to the city, and I really hope to get many of them involved with volunteering at the shelter.”

Last year’s Winter Shelter, which was open between November 2021 and March 2022, provided 2067 nights’ protection for 72 people. 37 of these people were supported into longer-term secure accommodation, equalling an average of 3.5 people a week.

Emmanuel House has operated a Winter Shelter in community halls around Nottingham since 2006. They have gradually become a key service for homeless people over winter. Over the past 12 years, the Winter Shelter has provided emergency accommodation for 1621 people, of which 952 were supported in finding long-term accommodation.

In March 2020 Emmanuel House’s Winter Shelter moved into a hotel under the ‘Everybody In’ initiative when the government instructed all local authorities to move all homeless people into single-room accommodation. Emmanuel House then supported up to 50 people a night. The 24-hour wrap-around support this accommodation model offered proved invaluable.

This year, there will be no central funding for hotel accommodation, but running the Winter Shelter in a church hall is also not possible. Many of the guests have underlying health conditions, meaning guests cannot sleep in one large space where any infection could be quickly transmitted amongst the guests and staff.

This year’s Winter Shelter will cost £1,000 a night to run. Emmanuel House funds the service through donations from charitable trusts, private donors and businesses.

Emmanuel House is currently looking for volunteers and sessional staff to work at the Winter Shelter. Information on volunteering, job vacancies and fundraising can be found on the Emmanuel House website.

  •  Plans for £2 million transformation of Emmanuel House

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