Wycombe Homeless Connection delivering more support than ever and with some faces you might recognize.
With the government’s announcement of the roadmap out of lockdown, most of us are now daring to dream of a more normal life, seeing friends and families, going to the pub, getting back to work normally, but for many there are still considerable challenges ahead. The homeless is one group for which these challenges will not stop. Wycombe Homeless Connection (WHC) have worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic and their work continues and as a business we will continue to support them and help where we can. WHC have been delivering a number of projects over the past months and here is an update on some of them. Because of you, we’re still here and still helping The recent news about a further extension of the eviction ban was welcome, but pressure is still building on so many people, including many who are not protected by the ban. The number of people claiming universal credit has risen sharply with a third of new claimants saying their income is 40% lower than when the pandemic began, and one in five saying they are behind on essential bills including rent. If you know anyone who is worried about keeping their home, you can help WHC help them. Tell them their first step is to call their hotline, 01494 447699 (Mon – Friday) or get in touch via the website: www.wyhoc.org.uk/contact They can help them online, by phone and also in person at the support centre if needed. We will support people with food, clothing, advice and any other help they may need to find a more permanent home. What to do: If you see someone you think is under 18, or is an adult in immediate danger or needing urgent medical care you should call 999. If you are worried about someone who is homeless, or if someone asks you for money for a shelter, please put them in contact with WHC as soon as possible or contact WHC with details yourself. Local people helping local people The support from our community continues to be overwhelming. You might have spotted WHC had a flying visit from Tom Kerridge, celebrity chef and one of the team behind Meals from Marlow. A wonderful volunteer-led initiative, Meals from Marlow operate out of one of Tom’s professional kitchens providing nutritious, fresh meals which our volunteers deliver to people in WHC’s ‘keeping your home’ project. The announcement of the roadmap dates has been helpful for them, enabling them to continue planning how staff and volunteers may be able to change the way they are working. But in terms of how the pandemic is still impacting both the people they serve who have lost their homes, or how it is impacting people who are worried about losing theirs, there is a lot of work to be done! The extension of the eviction ban was most welcome, but WHC still need more guidance and action from the government if they are to not see a wave of homelessness once the ban is lifted and evictions begin again. James their CEO wrote a blog about the risks last week – you can read it here. The number of people calling their homelessness prevention hotline is still high, especially as they are now offering these services across the whole county. WHC are also now supporting fifty people in the emergency accommodation – far, far more than they have ever worked with before. They help them not only get off the street and into the safety of B&Bs and emergency rooms, but also support them with food, clothing and advice they need to find a more permanent home. Many also need help with their health – including registering people with GPs so they don’t miss out on the vaccine! We will continue to support WHC but they need more help so if you can do anything to help out please look at their website and get in touch. For more information on the charities we support and our CSR work contact us.