Our guide: How to help rough sleepers this Winter

As winter sets in, Action Homeless have released guidance on the best ways that members of the public can help people who are experiencing homelessness in Leicester over the coming weeks and months, by identifying three positive ways to give your support.

  1. Give local – there are a huge range of local charities, including Action Homeless, who directly support people experiencing homelessness or rough sleeping in Leicester. Making a donation to one of these groups means your money will be used to provide practical and professional help.
  2. Volunteer your time – During the winter period, there are numerous opportunities to support homeless people through volunteering. Night shelters, hostels and drop in projects will be scaling up activity during the winter months meaning extra volunteers are needed. A couple of hours of your time will make a huge difference.
  3. Use Streetlink.org.uk to connect rough sleepers with professionals that can help – Using the Streetlink app, helpline or website you can tell us the location of someone you’ve seen rough sleeping. This alerts Leicester’s Outreach Team who can go and speak to the person you have seen and offer them help and support.

Mark Grant, Action Homeless CEO said ‘It’s a question I get asked all the time, how can I help the person I see living on the streets? It is everyone’s personal choice when it comes to giving but it’s fantastic to have these three simple ways to make a difference’

Supporting people affected by homelessness can have just as positive an effect on the people being supported as it can on the person offering help. Oriel, a Leicester volunteer, said ‘volunteering is as fulfilling as it sounds as you get to engage with people who truly need and appreciate your support. I made new friends, learnt new skills and gained relevant work experience which is now benefiting me in job applications and interviews”