As temperatures start to tumble and winter takes hold Basildon Emergency Night Shelter (BENS) is set to reopen tonight (Monday 18 November).

The night shelter will be open for seven nights each week until Tuesday 31 March 2020 and is run by five different faith groups in seven different locations.

Leader of Basildon Council Councillor Gavin Callaghan said: "The night shelter provides a safe and warm place for people to sleep over in the cold winter months. This can be a dangerous time of year for people living on the streets.

"This is why we work with national homelessness charity, St Mungo's, to fund three street impact workers to go out and contact people on the streets, talk to them about their situation, their health and other issues, and help them to move off the streets for good.

"I'd also like to take this opportunity to thank the public for their generosity, donating non-perishable food and blankets to the shelters, as well as those who have used the StreetLink app to refer rough sleepers to the service."

In addition to funding street impact workers, Basildon Council receives funding from the Rough Sleeping Initiative to provide up to six 'emergency crash-pads' throughout the year to those confirmed as rough sleepers who are working with St Mungo's.

If you are concerned about someone sleeping rough and want to connect them to local services, contact via the national referral service StreetLink

ENDS

Published on Monday 18 November 2019