Peterborough groups recognised for helping Peterborough’s rough sleepers

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Peterborough groups have been recognised for supporting Peterborough’s rough sleepers.

Four were triumphant this week at the Love Britain and Ireland Awards, which were organised by Premier Christian Radio.

The Safer Off the Streets partnership won one of the regional awards, scooping the ‘Best Start-Up’ category for its work with some of the city’s most vulnerable residents.

The partnership has helped on average two rough sleepers to leave the streets a month since it began last October and has raised £8,000 for charity.

Agencies involved in the Safer Off the Streets partnership include: The Light Project Peterborough, Hope Into Action, Peterborough City Council, Street Pastors, Peterborough Food Bank, YMCA, Safer Peterborough, Citizens Advice Peterborough, The Salvation Army, Veterans for the Homeless, Love & Humanity Peterborough, Kingsgate Community Church, Axiom, Children of Adam and the Peterborough Soup Kitchen.

The Light Project Peterborough won the ‘Community Building’ category.

The Light Project Peterborough is a registered charity which runs the Garden House in the cathedral grounds and created a welcoming environment for rough sleepers thanks to its kind-hearted volunteers.

The charity also runs the Winter Night Shelter in Peterborough in which churches across the city open their doors to provide rough sleepers with a warm bed to sleep in during the winter months.

Hope Into Action won the ‘Social Action’ category.

The registered charity’s purpose is to enable churches to house the homeless. Its original aim was to support people coming out of prison, however, homes are now available for a wide range of homeless people in recovery from addiction, people sleeping rough, women and children fleeing domestic violence, people coming out of rehab, former prostitutes, refugees, those suffering mental health issues and survivors of human trafficking.

In Peterborough it has 17 homes for the homeless and across the country 70 homes.

The Care Zone within Kingsgate Community Church won the ‘Social Justice’ category.

Care Zone began back in 2000 with a group of people from Kingsgate Community Church in Parnwell who saw a need in the community and wanted to make a difference. Over the years, Care Zone has served thousands of people in the community.

Christine Graham, chair of the Safer Off the Streets partnership, said: “This award is testament to what can be achieved in just a few months when organisations in Peterborough work together for the greater good. We are delighted to have won and are looking forward to the national awards in the autumn.”

Cllr John Holdich, leader of Peterborough City Council, which is one of the Safer Off the Streets partner organisations, said: “I’d like to say a massive well done to all those involved in the Safer Off the Streets partnership and to the Light Project Peterborough and Hope Into Action for their efforts over the past nine months.”

Residents who want to pledge their help to rough sleepers in the city through the partnership can donate money either online, via the contactless card reader in St Peter’s Arcade, or at the cash collection boxes at the Town Hall reception and Visitor Information Centre.

The money goes towards the running of the Garden House.