The Council has won an Excellence Award for its Thanet Winter Shelter project. The award was presented to the council’s Housing Team alongside partners from the Salvation Army, at the Kent Housing Group’s Excellence Awards 2018 on 19 September 2018.
Thanet Winter Shelter – ‘Giving Hope to Change’ won the award in the category: Excellence in Delivery Services for Vulnerable People.
The award recognised the development of the Thanet Winter Shelter and how it has successfully met the needs of such a vulnerable group of people. It also recognised the shelter’s significant outcomes – in two years, it has supported 58 vulnerable guests during the coldest months of the year.
Now preparing for its third year, the Thanet Winter Shelter offers a safe place for those sleeping rough across Thanet. As well as providing a bed, clothes and a hot meal a key aim of the Shelter is to better equip guests with the skills to help them secure and retain longer-term accommodation. It also aims to provide practical pathways for training and employment.
Unique to Thanet’s Winter Shelter is engaging with Kent’s Mental Health practitioners to ensure guests are referred to the most appropriate primary care/charity sector services for their needs. The shelter is a key part of the council’s coordinated approach to addressing rough sleeping in Thanet.
Cllr Lesley Game, Cabinet member for Housing at Thanet District Council, said:
“Thanet’s Winter Shelter has enjoyed tremendous success since its inception, so it’s fantastic that it has been recognised by others in the field as an extremely effective way to deliver a service to help vulnerable people towards a life off the streets.
“This award is not just for the Council’s Housing Team, a huge congratulations and thank you must go to the Salvation Army, Porchlight, the Glo Gen’s Aspire programme and all the churches and volunteers who donated or gave up their time and donated much needed equipment so generously for this project.”
Recruitment of volunteers to support this year’s Thanet Winter Shelter has now begun. A dedicated information evening for those interested in volunteering will take place on Monday 8 October. Further information can be found via this link.
It is hoped this year’s shelter will run from the end of November until mid March, rotating around venues in Thanet every night during that period. Overall the shelter is hoping to provide at least 20 beds for people who would otherwise be rough sleeping across the district.