Could coronavirus offer a glimmer of hope that we can put an end to homelessness in Oxfordshire? Help us avoid the tragedy of a return to the streets by giving to Oxfordshire Homeless Movement
During the first lockdown, something unprecedented happened: people across the country were immediately brought in from the streets to protect them and the public from the threat of the pandemic. Could homelessness be solved overnight?
Sadly not. Rough sleeping is like the tip of a large homelessness iceberg and of course, temporary accommodation is not a home. Now, due to the economic fallout of lockdown, pressure is building again. But we can end homelessness if we are determined enough.
In our county, proactive collaborations between councils and local charities have meant that no-one has to face being returned to the streets so far:
- In Oxford city alone, 291 people were accommodated as part of the government’s ‘Everyone In’ mandate
- Interim accommodation and support is now in place so that people experiencing homelessness can receive the support that they need
- 121 people in Oxford have already been supported into more permanent housing
To ensure no one is left out we need to fund lasting solutions.
Now is the time to build on this momentum
OHM facilitates genuine and lasting collaboration between the many agencies working hard to tackle homelessness locally, bringing together all six councils, local businesses, the universities and around 70 Oxfordshire charities, such as Aspire, Crisis and St Mungo’s.
What is more, our projects fill the gaps that others can’t, such as supporting people who cannot access any government-funded services due to their country of origin; providing the finishing touches to accommodation that turns it into a real home; and ensuring that the voices of those with lived experience of homelessness are at the heart of local decision-making.
This work supports people like Sam, who is now housed in OHM partner Aspire’s Beckett Street project since being made homeless during coronavirus. He says “If you come together in supported living, as a family together, you can do something creative, build relationships and trust – it’s the best. I’m looking forward to turning my life around.”
Help us write the happy ending to this story
It would be a tragedy for this story to end with an increase in homelessness and a return to rough sleeping. With your help, we can create a better ending, making the most of these opportunities, right now and over the long term. Your donation will help us continue to make a difference, and be there to show anyone experiencing homelessness that people do care, and there is a way out.
What you can do to help
- Donate funds you would have spent on events to our appeal
- Create online versions of events or fundraisers
- Give your time, or resources that are needed by people experiencing homelessness – find out what’s needed on our website