Since 2012, As Suffa outreach (based in Aston), has been feeding our city’s homeless week-in week-out during all weathers. The project led by volunteers and without public funding, has expanded to 7 cities across the country serving over 250,000 hot meals to date. It has also teamed up with local volunteers to respond to flood emergencies affecting rural towns getting essential supplies to stranded residents.
Francis, who has been homeless in Birmingham for 16 years says,
“It wasn’t a choice or something I ever imagined would happen to me. I was involved in a mountaineering accident at Mont Blanc, where my brother and best friend passed away. Shortly after this, my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer and passed away. This was the start of my downward spiral that quickly led me to find myself homeless and sleeping rough.”
On Monday 7th October, they will hold a week long roadshow in 7 different UK cities to raise awareness of homelessness and bring local communities together to unpack what is working and not working in supporting rough sleepers off the street. Events and activities will be held in Glasgow, Bradford, Manchester, London, Cardiff, Brighton and ending in Birmingham on Sunday 13th October.
Taz Khan, Head of Development at As Suffa says,
“We want to change stereotypes, highlight some of the work that is going on to help people this winter, and to build better links between users, services and the public. We were established as a result of ordinary people inspired to act to helping others in their city. Our biggest concern isn’t about resources to continue our regular meals, but the need for accountability of agencies and lack of out of hours support which is key to support homeless people. There are still too many cracks despite flagship announcements, making it all the more easier for rough sleeping to be an option.”
What comes out of the week long national roadshow will be presented to 10 Downing Street and regional elected officials as a powerful call to action. All concerned about homelessness are invited to go along to an event near them and have their say.
Notes to editors:
As-Suffa Outreach is a project of the As-Suffa Institute, faith based charitable organisation based in Aston, Birmingham. More info here www.as-suffa.org
More info on the National Homeless Awareness Week is available at www.nhaw.co.uk
All press/media enquiries, please contact: Taz on 07525 536 007 or email [email protected]