6 December 2022

The Homelessness Partnership BCP is issuing an urgent appeal for donations this Christmas as the soaring cost of living, rising inflation and economic turbulence places extreme pressure on services that are dedicated to tackling homelessness in the conurbation.

For less than the price of a tin of festive chocolates, a £3 donation at the Partnership’s Change for Good contactless giving points in Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole can help to transform the life of a person in crisis this Christmas.

Helping a vulnerable person off the streets, however, is just the start of the journey. Support services urgently need funding to provide those in need with life’s essentials and start them on the road to recovery.

Chair of the Partnership Forum, Alistair Doxat-Purser, explained: “Traditionally, during the countdown to Christmas, the nation’s thoughts turn to helping those who face a bleak midwinter without a safe place to call home. Organisations within the Homelessness Partnership BCP face immense financial challenges when it comes to providing basic items for people who were formerly rough sleeping, when they go into safe accommodation.

“The rising cost of providing everyday essentials from toiletries to cooking equipment, furniture and white goods is placing services under intense pressure.

“Money donated via the Change for Good contactless giving points and our JustGiving page goes directly to charities and organisations that help those recovering from the trauma of rough sleeping into safe, secure homes. In hard times, even the smallest donation helps to provide frequently requested items that make a big difference,” Alistair added.

Grants awarded from donations are independently managed on behalf of Change for Good by the Dorset Community Foundation, based in Poole. It is witnessing huge demand to fund essential items such as ‘move-in packs’. Costing £50 – £75, they contain toiletries, cleaning products, bedding and cooking equipment.

To help a person to begin their journey towards independent living, it costs around £250 to provide a bed and mattress; £150 to supply a washing machine and £200 for a fridge.

Dorset Community Foundation points out that, in many cases, move-on accommodation will need to be fitted with carpet or flooring, which typically costs around £350 to install.

The Foundation’s Director, Grant Robson, said: “Grants of up to £1,000 are awarded to local charities and organisations that work with homeless people to help them to move away from the streets, tackle personal challenges and address root causes of homelessness.

“Without financial support, people who are helped off the streets are at risk of moving into empty accommodation that doesn’t even have a bed for them to sleep on. By providing a secure home and basic cleaning, cooking items and furniture, money raised goes a long way towards setting people on the road to independent living.”

Change for Good – more than £8,000 raised in 2022!
Donations via Change for Good contactless giving points and through the scheme’s crowd-funding page on JustGiving have delivered a vital funding boost to support services that help people to recover from rough sleeping.

Between April and September this year, more than £8,000 raised has been given to charities to help people to rebuild their lives. Here’s a look at how your kind donations have made a real difference during 2022.

  • Helping Homeless Veterans (£1,000). White goods for supported accommodation.
  • Bournemouth YMCA (£500). Furniture for clients moving into accommodation.
  • Routes to Roots, Poole (£1,000). Drop-in sessions and a women’s group for people who are rough sleeping.
  • Safe and Sound Dorset (£1,000). Supporting women into new accommodation.
  • Dorset Working Women’s Project (£1,000). Essential household items for 20 vulnerable women moving into supported accommodation.
  • BH1 – Boscombe Salvation Army (£1,000). Furniture for homelessness drop-in centre.
  • BCHA (£985). Kitchen white goods for 40 residents at a Bournemouth hostel.
  • Hope Housing (£500). Move-in packs for 10 new residents in supported accommodation.
  • Safe and Sound Dorset (£500). Orthopaedic bed for disabled lady in new accommodation.

To donate, please visit https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/changeforgoodBournemouth.

About the Homelessness Partnership BCP
The Homelessness Partnership BCP is made up of more than 40 local organisations that have signed a charter committing “to end homelessness in Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole by ensuring everyone has a safe place to live that they can call home”.

It is driven by representatives of statutory bodies (council, police, health and probation), businesses, charities, faith groups, universities and educational institutions – as well as people with lived experience of homelessness.