Oxford Homeless Movement, an exciting new citywide partnership, is launching on Thursday 10 October. This is an innovative, inclusive Movement aimed at reducing rough sleeping in Oxford which includes local homeless charities, housing providers, Oxford City Council, health providers, funding bodies, community-based organisations and businesses.
Street homelessness has been on the increase since the turn of the decade and hit record levels in England in 2017, including in Oxford.
We are working in partnership with local businesses including The Westgate Fund, John Lewis & Partners, Royds Withy King, Beard, Carter Jonas and College and County Letting Agents, who have pledged their support to The Movement. Together, we are looking at ways to bring additional funds into The Westgate Fund and help the city solve homelessness.
Businesses have helped with these types of projects:
• a pilot Housing First scheme has launched enabling people from South Oxfordshire sleeping rough in Oxford to receive local housing and intensive support more accommodation for those leaving psychiatric wards and needing support.
• a house for people who have been in hospital and require an extra couple of weeks off the streets to help their recuperation
• a new house opening in Oxford for ex-offenders leaving prison to give them the best chance of rehabilitating in the community
• established a homelessness prevention service, to engage and support people in the community at the first signs of homelessness
• a ‘public talking shop’ for inspiring city-wide conversations on housing and homelessness. Open House is a platform for the voices of people experiencing homelessness and insecure housing and is ensuring that this lived experience stays central to the Movement and wider action on housing and homelessness in the city.
OCF and Oxford Homeless Movement are calling on more businesses, organisations and individuals in Oxford to get involved, everyone is welcome to come along to the launch at Open House, 36 Little Clarendon St, Oxford, OX1 2HU at 11.30 am or 15.30, to find out more about this initiative and join The Movement.
Please visit oxfordhomelessmovement.org.uk and pledge your support by signing the charter or by making a donation.