It's hard for most of us to comprehend ending up on the streets. But there are so many reasons why people do end up homeless, from being unable to afford rent in private housing, to finding it hard to gain employment due to a health problem.
Why Volunteer For A Homeless Charity In Cheltenham?
Homelessness is on the rise in the UK, especially in cities and large towns. While Cheltenham is not exceptional among the trend nationally, it still has a growing homeless community who are in need of help.
Thankfully, the town has some truly amazing charities that offer vital support to homeless people. Helping out some of the organisations listed below through volunteering or fundraising is a fantastic way to give back to your local community.
You could also sign up to play People's Postcode Lottery, if you haven't already, as some amazing charities supporting homelessness are funded by our players.
Homeless Charities In Cheltenham That Need Your Support
This internationally renowned homeless charity was founded in Paris in the 1940s to try and combat homelessness and poverty following WWII. Fast forward seventy years and it now has branches right across the UK that aim to provide accommodation and employment support for the homeless.
In Cheltenham, you'll find an Emmaus charity shop on Henrietta Street that actively fundraises for the organisation's vital work by selling donated goods. There are several great ways that you can support the organisation, from donating high quality goods to volunteering to do a regular shift in the shop's stockroom.
The YMCA are well-known for the support and facilities it provides to the UK's teenage and young adult population. The YMCA in Cheltenham is one of the oldest branches in the country, and is proud to have a diverse supported housing network that's able to provides more than 50,000 beds per year for those in need.
Whether from lack of employment or from struggles or abusive situations at home, there are many reasons why a young person may be at risk of becoming homeless. Luckily, the YMCA has a range of accommodation options as well as supportive networks and wellbeing services.
The YMCA Cheltenham could always do with extra volunteers to help maintain its supported housing and run its range of activity programmes. You could also get involved with its charity events in Cheltenham, including the annual Sleep Easy fundraiser.
The Trussell Trust Cheltenham Food Bank
The Trussell Trust is a UK-wide organisation that has opened up dozens of foodbanks to give vulnerable people in need emergency food supplies. It works via a referral system that allows the most disadvantaged to gain access to food vouchers to use in their nearest food bank.
The Cheltenham Foodbank opened in 2012 and has been able to provide over 2,500 emergency meal packages to families and individuals living below the poverty line in the area. It relies on donations of non-perishable food from local businesses, church groups and individuals, which are then distributed from the foodbank at the Elim Christian Centre on St. George's Road.
If you'd like to show your support for the Cheltenham Foodbank, why not get in touch to see if you could volunteer to sort, package and distribute the food? Donating tinned or dried goods is also a wonderful way to help, as is getting involved with any of the charity's fundraising events in Cheltenham.
Cheltenham Housing Aid Centre
This charity was set up over 30 years ago to provide support, advice and advocacy for homeless people and those living in poverty in Cheltenham. It assists people in finding suitable housing as well as offering advice on budgeting and benefits.
The Cheltenham Housing Aid Centre currently runs two projects for the homeless - the Doorway Project and the Neptune project - which specifically try to help those suffering from an addiction or a mental health issue. The organisation can assist people with finding and paying for private housing too, through its Rent Deposit Scheme.
Why not get in touch with the Cheltenham Housing Aid Centre to see if there are any volunteering opportunities? You could also help fundraise on the organisation's behalf, so they can continue to provide their valuable free services to the town's homeless community.
How Can You Show Your Support?
If you're keen to support some of the amazing charities in your area, take a look at our Local Causes directory. You'll also be helping every time you play People's Postcode Lottery - with money from every ticket sold going to some incredible organisations around the UK.