It’s cold outside…help people in need on our streets

This year hundreds of vulnerable people were brought in from the streets where they were rough sleeping to be given shelter during the pandemic. 

Throughout the Covid crisis, we’ve worked with health and community sector partners in the city to provide safe, self-contained accommodation for people who were sleeping rough. 

Looking after people in need has been a priority and everyone who needs it is being provided with food and support.

Make Change Count

Charities and organisations across Brighton & Hove continue to work with people to help them find a permanent solution to their homelessness. 

The city’s Make Change Count has played a part in this and urgently needs your support to help people this winter. 

The global pandemic has had a huge impact on vulnerable rough sleepers. This has been seen here in our city as elsewhere.

While rooms have been found for anyone who is sleeping rough to help them have a safe space to follow the stay at home guidance, the familiarity of friends has been limited by the physical distancing rules.

People need help and support to adapt to living in new ways. Support is vital.

Experienced organisations

The Make Change Count campaign links local organisations which are experienced in supporting rough sleepers and preventing homelessness.

The participating organisations are: BHT, St Mungo's, Sussex Nightstop, Equinox, Antifreeze, The Clock Tower Sanctuary, YMCA Downslink Group, Umbrella Brighton & Hove and YMCA Brighton.

These organisations, like many in the city, are currently working during the Coronavirus crisis to provide connections into services and help people meet their basic needs.

Sadly, we are also aware that some people are still sleeping rough in the city. Some of these are people newly arrived in the city, a few people have refused accommodation, and some have left the Covid-19 accommodation they were in. 

Our outreach workers are out on the frontline seven days a week as well as providing essential help behind the scenes.

Supporting Make Change Count helps with this vital work. Contributions are used to provide food, access to shower facilities, healthcare, clothing and a wide range of practical help based on individual needs. This can be life-changing and lifesaving.

Please help

Paul Young, Founder Chief Executive Officer of Off The Fence (incorporating Antifreeze Homeless Project), said: “Our fundraising activities have been hit by the pandemic. We’ve not been able to hold events and donations are lower than in previous years because everyone is under such pressure. 

“In recent years, Make Change Count raised about £40,000 by the end of December. This year, even with generous donations from local businesses, we have only raised about £16,000 so far. Please help if you can. 

“We know that the best chance for a homeless person to get off the streets and stay off the streets is with professional help. Making sure help reaches homeless people is far more effective than giving money to people directly. Make Change Count is a way for you to make that happen.”

Councillor David Gibson, joint chair of housing committee, said: “During the pandemic we have brought hundreds of rough sleepers and people at risk of rough sleeping indoors. 

“We have a once in a generation opportunity to offer these people a sustainable housing future. 

“The help of the Make Change Count services is needed more than ever now but donations are down this year from previous years so please, if you are able, help support the campaign now. It’s quick and easy to donate online. Thank you.

More information

No funds raised are used for administration of the charities or the campaign. If £5 is donated, then £5 will go to people in need.

More than £100,000 has been raised and gone directly to help some of our most vulnerable residents since the campaign began four years ago. Donate to Make Change Count.

Through Make Change Count, you can help with this essential action by supporting the aims of the campaign which are to:

  • Help people who are rough sleeping to access support services available in the city and to move away from the streets for good
  • Encourage an alternative option to giving directly to individuals on the street. You can donate to Make Change Count online today
  • Let Streetlink know if you see anyone in need living on the streets so tailored help can be offered. If you are concerned about someone sleeping rough in England or Wales, you can use the Streetlink website to send an alert. The details you provide are sent to the local authority or outreach service for the area in which you have seen the person, to help them find the individual and connect them to support. Outreach workers are experienced in supporting people to move away from the streets.

The campaign is supported by Brighton & Hove City Council, Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner and Sussex Police.

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