Money recovered from criminals to help house Peterborough’s rough sleepers
Cash recovered from criminals will be used to support disadvantaged or troubled families and other vulnerable people across Cambridgeshire.
Various churches across the county have been awarded £2,000 each thanks to Proceeds of Crime Act funding and a scheme by Cinnamon Network – a registered charity.
The partnership between the force and the charity allows the churches to start projects addressing community issues.
As of August 1, the Open Door Church in Peterborough will run the Hope into Action project providing housing and community for vulnerable rough sleepers.
The church has purchased a house and is now working to provide accommodation for prison leavers and those struggling with homelessness, addictions and domestic violence.
Aside from helping tenants to develop practical life skills, volunteers are trained to provide care, friendship and emotional support.
The project will work with seven people during the first year and it is hoped will continue beyond that.
In the coming months the Chatteris Parish Church will run the Intentional Health project to improve the health of individuals and communities.
Volunteers are trained to provide a 10 session programme that helps people address factors impacting their health, together with destructive behaviours such as alcohol and drug abuse.
The project develops relationships with GP surgeries, family centres, council services and the police, who refer and promote the project.
Four Cambridge churches will also benefit from the money.
Inspector Paul Rogerson said: “Proceeds of Crime Act hearings demonstrate that crime doesn’t pay and furthermore, schemes like this highlight what that money then goes towards.
“The projects soon to be carried out by these churches across Cambridgeshire support a number of force priorities – from Serious Street Based Violence to child exploitation and domestic abuse.”