Lifestyle

A lifeline for the homeless! Phones given to rough sleepers so they stay connected

New mobiles will improve social inclusion and access to services.

When we consider issues around tackling homelessness, we tend to think of access to beds and helping people stay under a warm roof.

However, what is often forgotten is the need to say connected socially.

Having a phone would not only allow homeless people to access services, but also reduce social isolation and exclusion in a digital world.

[Credit: Matt Collamer]

Yet thanks to Crisis – the UK national charity for homeless people – they are now gifting £700,000 worth of smartphones and data to people over the next 12 months.

RELATED: COUNTRY WIPES OUT HOMELESSNESS WITH WELLBEING APPROACH

The new initiative is part of a two-year partnership with Tesco Mobile, who will supply the handsets and phone credit for those in need.

It is estimated there are 300,000 homeless people currently living in the UK, whether sleeping rough or in temporary housing without a permanent residence.

The project also aims to help drive people without jobs to search for employment.

[Credit: Jon Tyson]

Chief Executive of Crisis, Jon Sparkes, explained: “Access to a phone or the internet has been vital for so many people throughout the pandemic to stay connected, yet it’s something we know people experiencing homelessness often don’t have, and this adds to feelings of isolation and anxiety.

“During lockdown, we provided 1,000 mobile phones to clients to ensure they can continue to access support digitally, reconnect with family and friends and find somewhere safe and settled to live online.”

He continued: “We will build on this work and ensure a far greater number of people experiencing homelessness across Great Britain can connect with Crisis and other vital services to help them end their homelessness for good.”

For more info, or to volunteer, click here: Crisis.

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