We are situated in the heart of an area of severe deprivation by national standards. River, the ward in which we are situated, is ranked in the 1% of most deprived areas in England and Wales1.
Medway has the largest total number of homeless people in Kent, with 860 in temporary accommodation and 14 rough sleepers according to a Shelter report in December 2016. It is ranked in the bottom 20% of districts nationally for skills and qualifications, and the proportion of working age population in long-term unemployment1.
In Autumn 2015 counts and estimates suggested there were 3,569 rough sleepers on any one night in England2. New government figures released on 28 September 2016 show that 15,170 UK households were accepted as homeless between April and June 2016, a 10% rise on the previous year3.
The people we encounter have had a tough time in life; they are homeless and often vulnerable. But, like the £20 note, we believe that everyone has value, and that a person's past or current circumstances do not diminish their worth or their potential. It is our aim to restore the self-confidence of our guests, helping them overcome addictions and other barriers.
Right from our initial assessment, we treat everyone as somebody’s daughter, somebody’s son. We care about finding the cause of their problems. Then we can help them to find a long-term solution for themselves and work towards it, rebuilding self-confidence - perhaps through experience as a volunteer, or through back-to-work courses.