Food and Fellowship for the Homeless in London

by Streetlytes UK
Oct 18, 2012

St. Stephens - Film Food and Fellowship

Since our reopening on the 10th of September our homeless guests have increased by 25%.  We now feed over 500 monthly and we are preparing for the Winter with survival equipment.  Our volunteer based has increased as we have two additional corporate sponsors.

We are able to house two homeless individuals into a studio flat and now they are giving back to Streetlytes by way of volunteering.

 

Who Do We Work With

The total numbers of beneficiaries we work with are approximately 650+ per month.  The median age of our beneficiaries are between 25-60, with 80% male, 15% female and 5% gay, lesbian and transgender.  The types of beneficiaries we work with are chronic rough sleepers, hidden homeless and those in the throes of alcoholism and substance misuse. 

Training Courses:  Streetlytes-UK provides training in 4 times per year to up-skill their tools of engagement with the homeless and vulnerable with 16 in attendance this year.  Training is available for all volunteers working in our kitchen facilities and this is a Food and Safety Catering Course – Level II, and, as a result eight volunteers have completed the course in 2011-2012.  We provide first aid training under the auspices of the British Red Cross and sent 25 volunteers this year.  The average hours that a volunteer will work is 5 hours.  We have approximately 10+ volunteers working at each of our drop in centres and have a pool of about 75 volunteers in total.

 

What difference WE have made

  •   One of the meaningful outcomes derived from our Drop In Centre at the Salvation Army and St. Stephens was the community spirit of local business and shops within the vicinity of our Drop Ins.  Their unreserved involvement came by way of volunteers and donations of foodstuffs which helped to cut down on costs and become self-sustainable.  Major appreciation goes out to Markel International, EMI, Gail’s Bakery, Whole Foods Market, Sainsburys and Greggs Bakery. 
  • Another important aspect with the cohesiveness of the Christian spirit of mentoring and hospitality through working together for the greater good of our guests and the unconditional offering of hospitality.
  • We were able through our Letting Agents house another eight rough sleepers into independent living flats.  EMI Music donated their time and money in helping to paint and decorate the flats.
  • Because of our location at St. Stephens we have an influx of Eastern Europeans who for the most part do not qualify for benefits and they fall under the net in regards accessing supportive services.  We made inroads by bringing aboard translators which were able to assist these individuals obtaining lost passports and other documents.  Also we were able to assist in tendering legal advice as one of our volunteers is a immigration solicitor.
  • Service User Led Volunteering – Streetlytes believe in service user volunteering as this a confidence building measure and gives them meaningful experience.  I would like to cite two case examples.  Kevin McKenna – engaged Streetlytes 2 years ago – homeless and addicted to drugs.  Today he is now our Project Manager at St. Stephens overseeing the engagement of 250+ homeless monthly.  Chris Wilson – started as a volunteer and because of the indelible impact of serving the homeless he changed his career and will be soon be employed at St. Mungos at a Project Worker.   Owen Cook engaged Streetlytes 3 years ago – homeless.  Today having volunteered with Streetlytes he has now obtained a job with a Hotel.
  • Streetlytes also donates food and winter survival equipment to various winter night shelters as we believe partnership is essential towards making a difference in the lives of the homeless on a wider scale.
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Organization Information

Streetlytes UK

Location: London, Greater London - United Kingdom
Website: http:/​/​www.streetlytes.org
Streetlytes UK
Project Leader:
Rudi Richardson
CEO
London, England United Kingdom

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