Efforts are being stepped up to help the rough sleepers still on Basingstoke’s streets in the run-up to winter with the relaunch of a fundraising campaign.
Just over £16,000 is needed to fund this year’s Night Light winter shelter and allow it to open seven days a week from December to February.
It is estimated that between 15 and 25 people are still sleeping rough on the borough’s streets, so the Real Change Not Loose Change campaign has been restarted to fund the shelter for them to use.
The campaign is run by Basingstoke’s Social Inclusion Partnership (SIP), with the campaign last year helping 32 people get off the streets and into secure accommodation.
SIP chair and borough council deputy leader Terri Reid said: “The generous response from local people to last year’s campaign was overwhelming and made a huge difference to the lives of many people sleeping rough.
“Sadly, people are still sleeping rough on the borough’s streets and as the weather turns colder, we are determined to set the ball rolling once again to provide essential support to those who are most in need.
“Everyone, from businesses to residents, can show their support by donating time, money or items, however small, as an alternative to giving directly to people on the streets.”
The Night Light shelter was held in churches around the town centre for the first time last year, with kind-hearted residents donating money, food and equipment as well as volunteering their time.
Money was also used to allow the Camrose Day Centre to open for a third day a week and fit a new shower room for homeless visitors.
Donations for this year’s campaign can be made at spacehive.com/real-change-basingstoke-2017.