No Second Night Out response team launched to fight against homelessness
A SCHEME has been launched to prevent people sleeping rough on the streets for a second night in a row.
The No Second Night Out response team is available 24 hours every day, and volunteers tend to those in need by offering support and accommodation.
The Rough Sleeping Prevention Project has seen the North East Lincolnshire Council, Harbour Place and the North East Lincolnshire Homelessness Forum work together to highlight the issue – and what they can do to help.
Tony Cadwallader, a street outreach worker for Harbour Place, is on 24-hour call for those who find someone sleeping rough in the area.
"We want people to identify rough sleepers and it is simple – by just calling a telephone number," he said.
"I will then go out and assess the individual, and find them a place of safety, emergency accommodation and other services they may need, such as medical attention.
"We will then continue with our support and monitor their health and well-being."
Tony believes there are no more than four people sleeping on the streets of North East Lincolnshire every night.
But he added: "It can happen to anyone. There is a stigma attached to homeless people.
"This will be a challenging role but I know it will fulfilling and rewarding. We have a great bunch of volunteers who are willing to help."
People involved in the project have been visiting local organisations, such as the fire service, to highlight its work.
Gerry Altoft, an enabling and partnership officer for North East Lincolnshire Council's strategic housing section, believes the partnership will be "key to success".
"I think this is a fantastic idea with us all working together and referring those who are less fortunate," she said. "People can become homeless for all sorts of reasons such as domestic abuse or from being in debt."
Jo Peart, a community safety advocate at Peaks Lane Fire Station, said: "This is brilliant because it is as simple as calling a number and saying where you have found the rough sleeper.
"It will be useful for us because when derelict buildings are on fire we sometimes find homeless people – so we will be able to use the team as our port of call.
"We don't come across homeless people too often but when we do, we know who to call when it happens."
If you find a rough sleeper, call Harbour Place Day Centre (between 9am and 5pm) on 01472 344118 or 01472 313131 24 hours a day.