Homeless shelter to remain open

By a County Press reporter

Monday, January 21, 2013


HOMELESS people can continue to stay at a night shelter during the icy spell after church volunteers offered to keep it open during the week.

The shelter is run on behalf of the Isle of Wight Council at Downside Community Centre, Newport, by volunteers from the Church of Victorious Life.

It was scheduled to be open at the weekend during the cold weather but the volunteers have agreed to undertake extra shifts in order to ensure it is available during the continuing cold conditions.

Besides a warm and secure place to sleep, facilities available at the shelter include food, hot drinks, shelter and bedding, use of washing facilities and the ability to wash and dry clothes.

Anyone who is homeless can access this free service. At the weekend, two rough sleepers took advantage of the shelter’s facilities.

Cllr Stuart Hutchinson, the Isle of Wight Council cabinet member for adult social care and housing, said: "As it is run by volunteers, the shelter’s opening hours are usually limited to the weekends during the inclement weather. However, we are delighted the church has been able to provide additional support during the continuing cold weather.

"Last week, the volunteers also agreed to provide cover during the worst of the weather. We are extremely grateful to them for providing this service to some of the most vulnerable people on the Island."

The Downside Community Centre has also been the base for volunteers from Pan Together, who have been distributing hot soup to vulnerable residents in the community.


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by Cathryn McKay

21st January 2013, at 22:18:34

I agree with b ward, such a sad thing to read about in today's society, people living rough in freezing conditions. I am not able to take in a person, I sure would if I could. And giving them help, a bed and shelter, well done all concerned,

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by b ward

21st January 2013, at 19:38:04

heartbreaking to think of anyone having to sleep on the streets at any time
yet alone in the current freezing conditions.Hard to believe this is allowed
to happen in our society. Respect to all those helping at the shelter to make sure these people have somewhere to go.

Any views or opinions presented in the comments above are solely those of the author and do not represent those of the Isle of Wight County Press.

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