Northampton Hope Centre, the charity for homeless and vulnerable people in the town, has joined forces with Northampton Borough Council (NBC) and Northampton Association for Accommodation for Single Homeless (NAASH), to provide support to rough sleepers as part of the ‘Severe Weather Emergency Protocol’.
Julia Rosser volunteers in the Hope Centre kitchens, which are experiencing high demand this winter
‘The winter weather and economic downturn has led to a dramatic increase in demand for the Hope Centre’s services’
This is the second time the organisations have worked together to deliver the ‘SWEP’ scheme, which was put into place earlier this week on 13 December 2012. SWEP is triggered when temperatures are forecast to fall below zero for three consecutive nights.
Catherine Maryon, Vice Chair of the Hope Centre, explains:
“The winter weather and economic downturn has led to a dramatic increase in demand for the Hope Centre’s services. We are working closely with NBC and NAASH to operate the scheme during sustained periods of freezing conditions over the winter period.
“Temperatures have once again nudged above freezing, but should they dip again we will re-open the scheme immediately for people needing help, who should come to register in the daytime for a place at Oasis House on Campbell Street, Northampton.
‘Every effort will be made to provide emergency accommodation, heating, bedding and food’
“Every effort will be made to provide emergency accommodation, heating, bedding and food to support those in need through the worst of the severe weather.
“The Hope Centre provides day-centre facilities all year round at a cost of over £22,000 a month. During the colder part of the year we see many more people needing our services, and we desperately need to raise £66,000 to meet the costs of opening over Christmas and throughout the winter.