CHRISTMAS dinners, social activities and warm and friendly places to meet are being offered to people who are homeless or rough sleeping in the city, and other vulnerable people, over the Christmas holiday.
Local charities, faith groups, the city council and other organisations will be providing a wide range of services throughout the festive period, to ensure that people can still get the support they need, and also get some Christmas cheer at a difficult time in their lives.
Cllr Elly Cutkelvin, asst mayor for housing said: “Our emergency hostel the Dawn Centre is open every day of the year including Christmas day and our aim is that no-one needs to sleep rough in Leicester at any time of year.
“Local charities and faith groups in Leicester provide amazing support all year round, and at Christmas they go the extra mile to make sure the most vulnerable people in the city can have a Christmas meal, some good company and the basic necessities that we all take for granted.
“We’re very grateful for the work they do, which makes a huge difference to people’s lives, and is needed more than ever at this time of year.”
Services on offer over the Christmas period include:
- Christmas day dinner, no referral needed, Robert Hall Memorial Baptist Church, Narborough Road
- Hot festive vegetarian dinner, pudding and mince pies to take away from the Midland Langa Seva Society, St Peter’s Highfields Church on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day
- Christmas day dinner at the Bridge Homelessness to Hope (referrals only). Breakfast & lunch served daily, shower and clothes washing facilities and social activities also available
- Christmas meal at the Holy Trinity Church on Friday 17 December. Gifts and food hampers also available. Food available every Friday including Dec 24 and 31.
- Christmas Eve hot food takeaway available, also on New Year's Eve and every Friday evening, from Help the Homeless, Abbey Street.
Full details of all services available over the next two weeks, including opening times and addresses are available on the council’s website at: www.leicester.gov.uk/homelessservices.
The council’s homeless outreach team is currently out in the city centre in the early hours of every weekday, looking for rough sleepers to offer them a bed and other support. The council commissions local charity Help the Homeless to provide the same service at the weekend.
They will be making people aware of the services on offer, which will also be promoted by other professionals working with vulnerable people in the city.
The council’s Dawn Centre is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week including Christmas day to provide an emergency bed and day centre activities. Staff there can be contacted on 0116 221 2770 in an emergency.