Help for the Homeless - Winter 2020-21
Help is available as we head into winter
Maidstone Borough Council Housing teams, along with community partners, have worked incredibly hard during the pandemic, helping more people find homes than ever before. They have dealt with 1231 new housing register applications, which led to the register growing by 34%. Also a further 600 households who have found themselves at risk of homelessness or actually homeless, have been supported by the Housing Advice service.
This year, due to Covid, The Maidstone Churches Winter Shelter cannot operate their normal programme of offering a night shelter to those who find themselves homeless. However, with the support of local churches, they will be providing a hot meal and a listening ear for up to 15 otherwise rough sleepers across four locations in Maidstone. As previously, they will be working closely with Maidstone Borough Council and especially with the Outreach Team to ensure there is a joined-up approach to assisting Rough Sleepers and Homeless in the town.
The evening meal sessions will open each evening from 4th January until the morning of 28th March 2021. More information about The Maidstone Churches Winter Shelter can be found here: https://www.maidstoneshelter.org.uk/
Outreach Team supporting homeless across borough
The Council’s Outreach Team continues to work and support rough sleepers across the borough of Maidstone.
The team was developed to help accommodate anyone found rough sleeping and needing assistance and to reduce the number of people living on our streets. They regularly spend time contacting and working with those who are in need of support, to help them rebuild their lives.
John Littlemore, MBC Head of Housing and Community Services said: “Some people may have complex issues and need a variety of services to help them lead healthier, happier lives. We support them to access benefits or employment, GP’s and healthcare, treatment and support for substance misuse and access to mental health services. The Council also provides them with basic life skills, such as budgeting, cooking and other skills to prepare them to live independently.
Since it was launched in 2018, the Outreach Team has reduced rough sleeping by over 90% and continues to help many who need support to live in their own accommodation. This approach has seen a reduction in anti-social behaviour and other associated issues and been recognised by partner agencies, including the police.”
If anyone finds a rough sleeper please let the Maidstone Outreach Team know about them at the www.streetlink.org.uk website or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Maidstone Churches Winter Shelter:
Maidstone Borough Council Outreach team: