From Wednesday 1 July R2R will re-open its drop-ins at Skinner Street URC to offer take-away food for rough sleepers only. With the Council’s emergency accommodation provision coming to an end and more rough sleepers being found on the streets, we believe re-starting this provision is vital. We plan to open between 1.30pm and 2.30pm every weekday. At this stage, we cannot allow clients inside the hall, in line with current rules governing cafes, so the toilets and shower will remain closed.
Bitterly cold weather triggered SWEP (Severe Weather Emergency Provision) at the start of the New Year in Poole. St Mungo’s rough sleeper team provided shelter for 5 or 6 homeless people on 2 January 2019, for the first time at Skinner Street URC Hall instead of the less accessible out of town accommodation. Hot food was not available so Routes to Roots left packed lunches for them all for Wednesday and Thursday. As Friday night is an R2R drop-in evening, hot food was provided as usual. As temperatures rose above zero on week commencing 7 January, the rough sleeper team has had to deactivate SWEP until further notice.
We were delighted to welcome nearly 80 people to our service at which Bishop Karen Gorman spoke movingly on the increasing problem of homelessness. She recalled how back in the 70s the vision was to eradicate homelessness but with changes in Government policy from the 80s this was still a dream. Bishop Karen spoke of the wonderful work being done in Poole through projects such as Routes to Roots and thanked all the volunteers for the work that they do as if we all did not do the work of Christ who would. The Bishop also spoke of the importance of speaking out and drawing the attention of decision makers to what things are like on the streets of Poole.
During the service Kate, one of our Trustees, updated everyone on what is happening at Amos House, our supported accommodation for three former rough sleepers. It is just about a year since they moved in and things are going well.
You can download her report with comments from two of the guys here:
Amos House Update 2017