Get involved! Send your photos, video, news & views by texting MG NEWS to 80360 or e-mail us
Volunteers needed to take in homeless
8:40pm Tuesday 17th September 2013 in News
A SCHEME which provides temporary accommodation for young homeless people has appealed for volunteer hosts with room in their hearts as well as their homes.
Hosted by Malvern-based Festival Housing, the South Worcestershire Nightstop has provided more than 500 nights of accommodation to 16 to 25 year olds since being set up in 2009.
It aims to reduce the number of young homeless people, or those at risk of homelessness – which can include ‘sofa surfers’ where people stay on sofas at friends’ homes while they seek a permanent place to live.
The group relies heavily on volunteers, called hosts, who take the youngsters in, possibly just for one night, and give them food, a bed and a sympathetic ear if needed.
But according to the scheme’s co-ordinator, Cath Woolford, more kind-hearted households are needed.
“We are always on the lookout for hosts,” she said.
“Nightstop is Lottery-funded and provides temporary accommodation for those aged 16 to 25.
“Hosts are just normal members of the public who have both room in their hearts and room in their homes.
“They would have a spare room in their home, maybe as a result of their own children leaving home and would provide a warm environment for the youngsters and a listening ear if needed.”
The youngsters can spend short placements of a few nights at a time or longer placements up to eight weeks with the adults.
“The hosts get the opportunity to give something back,”
said the co-ordinator.
“They also get 24-hour support.
There is an induction process.
“We invite people to have an informal chat if they’re thinking of applying to become hosts.
“If people think they can help make a difference to a young person’s life then they should get in touch.”
She says Nightstop can help support its clients in finding more suitable, supported accommodation, at venues such as Worcester’s YMCA, on Henwick Road.
Since Nightstop began in 2009, providing the 500 nights of accommodation works out at about 7,500 hours of volunteer time.
The scheme covers the Worcester City, Malvern Hills and Wychavon districts.
Anyone interested in applying to become a host should call 07918 160986.
Comments are closed on this article.