Rough sleeping

        Information and support for people who are rough sleeping or homeless

        People who have nowhere else to go, who are sleeping on the streets or in a tent are considered to be rough sleeping, which is an extreme form of homelessness. If you are concerned about someone who is rough sleeping you can:

        Notify us via streetlink at www.streetlink.org.uk

        If someone is at risk of becoming homeless please see our homeless or at risk of losing your home page.

        Helping someone who is rough sleeping can often be more complex and mean more than just finding physical accommodation. There may be a number of underlying reasons that have led to someone not having somewhere to live and a person may be in need of additional support from a number of different services.

        Thanet RISE project

        The council has been successful in applying for funding to establish a new multi-agency team to work with those who are rough sleeping and most in need of support.

        RISE stands for Rough sleeper Intervention, Support and Empowerment

        The Thanet RISE project is a multi agency partnership between Thanet District Council, the Forward Trust drug and alcohol service, Serveco homeless support services and Kent and Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership Trust , working together to support rough sleepers in Thanet.

        The project is also working alongside the Thanet Winter Shelter, Salvation Army, Citizens Advice Thanet and Paramount Independent Property Services to deliver a number of supported accommodation schemes for people who were previously rough sleeping.

        The overarching focus of this award winning project is to address any underlying barriers to finding and maintaining accommodation. The team includes staff from the councils homeless and landlord liaison services working jointly with in reach and outreach support workers, Substance Misuse specialists and a Mental Health expert to reduce rough sleeping and homelessness.


        The team carries out  early morning and late night outreach to identify and verify people who are actively rough sleeping and work with them to develop a support plan to tackle any underlying barriers to accomodation.

        This can range from providing food and clothing, helping someone to complete applications, obtaining identification, supporting emotional and mental wellbeing, physical health, practical skills, budgeting, support with any substance misuse.

        The team undertake street triage and complete detailed needs assessments putting the person at the centre of their reconnection and work as intensively as is needed and also deliver in reach support when someone moves into accommodation.

        We can only work with people if they are willing to work with us, but recognise that for some people this can be small steps.


        To contact us call 01843 577277 – or 01843 577000 in an emergency out of hours.

        Drop in and see us:

        Wednesday 9.30am-12pm Margate Gateway – Due to COVID-19 the Gateway is currently closed
        Tuesday 2pm-4pm GAP Baptist Church, Broadstairs

        Email: Roughsleeping@thanet.gov.uk


        Support for people who are rough sleeping or homeless

        There are regular drop in services available to rough sleepers across Thanet. More details can be found below or by downloading our calendar here.

        Information can also be found on our winter shelter and Severe Weather Emergency Protocol.

        The Gap Project located in Queen Road Baptist Church, Broadstairs works in partnership within the local community – meeting their needs by providing activities and support for individuals and families. For more information call: 01843 602762 or email: team@thegapproject.co.uk

        Open times: Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 2pm to 4pm.

        Access to:

        • Hot meal
        • Shower facilities with towels, flannels & toiletries  
        • Laundry facilities available
        • Turning point drop in on Tuesdays

        Telephone number : 01843 602762

        During periods of extreme weather, the Council operates a Severe Weather Emergency protocol (SWEP). Extreme weather can include any conditions that increase the risk of harm to people who are rough sleeping. This is often, but not exclusively, periods of cold weather or significant rainfall.  When deciding whether to trigger the protocol, the Local Authority must take into consideration local context and weather forecasts.
        When the protocol is triggered, the Council will promote this on its website and via social media channels that it will provide emergency accommodation for any person sleeping rough in the district so that it can prevent unnecessary deaths due to extreme weather.

        SWEP and Winter Provision guidance 2019 (PDF)


        How you can help or get involved

        There are lots of ways you can help people and get involved by donating or volunteering your time.

        • Make a financial donation – If you wish to donate financially to people who are rough sleeping then we would advocate making payment to a registered charity rather than giving out cash in person.
        • Donate unwanted items – Take any unwanted items to homeless charity shops
        • Volunteer your time – volunteer with the Thanet Winter Shelter

        Help & support

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