Local people have proved they are keen to support homeless people in Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole – and soon it will be even easier to give.
To date over £10,000 has been raised by donations to a new fund called ‘Change for Good’.
Run by the Homelessness Partnership for Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole, it is made up of local charities, businesses and public sector organisations. Donations can currently be made via the Just Giving Page but the partnership want to raise the profile of the scheme and make it even simpler for local people to be able to make a donation whilst out and about in town.
Work is underway to set up ‘giving points’ across Bournemouth and Poole town centres where local people can simply tap a payment card at a designated donation point to be able to make a set donation of £3 to help local people off the streets and prevent rough sleeping. The whole 100 per cent donation is guaranteed to help homeless people locally. It is hoped that a number of contact points will be installed at town centre locations across Bournemouth and Poole starting in the next few weeks.
The initiative follows as more than 400 people over the last year, who were rough sleeping or precariously housed, have been helped into emergency accommodation by the council and its partners through the ‘Everyone In’ initiative.
The partnership has also supported 118 people make positive moves from there into more secure longer-term housing. The funding raised by ‘Change for Good’ goes direct to local charities who work direct with people who are escaping homelessness complementing the statutory support by the council.
Alistair Doxat-Purser, chairman of the Partnership Forum, said: “As COVID-19 restrictions ease and the high streets open up, the partnership is raising the profile of ‘Change for Good’ to give members of the public an alternative way of helping those who are seeking to escape homelessness.
“Change for Good and the generosity of local people had already made a big difference. For many people, they don’t have even the bare essentials to turn four walls into a home.
“The first successful application for funds helped an individual in temporary accommodation to move into their own independent accommodation by providing basics like a fridge/freezer.
“This in turn opened up a space for someone who had been on the street to move into their now empty space in temporary accommodation – a double win. Other applications have included one to one coaching with a trauma support worker, equipment for day-time support activities, phone power-banks, and replacing identification: anything to help a person make a new start.”
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