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New grants for churches to help rough sleepers

02 November 2018

PA

A homeless person and their dog shelter in a doorway in London, last August

A homeless person and their dog shelter in a doorway in London, last August

CHURCHES in London will be able to access a £250,000 pot to fund provision for rough-sleepers, Housing Justice announced this week.

The charity has received extra money from the Greater London Authority to enable it to offer grants to start new night shelters and strengthen existing ones.

A total of 7484 people were seen rough-sleeping in London during the past year, compared with 3472 in 2008-09. Of these people, 4456 were new rough-sleepers who had never been seen rough-sleeping in London before April 2017.

Housing Justice reports that, by the end of the last winter season, there were 39 night shelters run by church and community groups in the city, accommodating an estimated 2100 rough-sleepers.

“To those churches not involved in a night-shelter project currently, I urge you to be that option: to open your doors and apply to us for funding and advice to make it happen,” the chief executive of Housing Justice, Kathy Mohan, said. “To existing projects, we want to help you to do more. A few weeks of use of the church hall can save lives and change lives, and we look forward to helping churches and faith communities make that difference this winter”

The Deputy Mayor for Housing, James Murray, said: “To end rough-sleeping once and for all, we need a step-change in investment from the Government, and an honest commitment by Ministers to address the root causes of homelessness and help prevent it in the first place.”

Applications can be made to www.housingjustice.org.co.uk/grants.

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