Clock Tower Sanctuary : Hike Against Homelessness

What they do

Founded in 1998, The Clock Tower Sanctuary is a charity fighting homelessness in the city of Brighton & Hove in Sussex. They provide support to young people experiencing homelessness, both practical as well as emotional and they are a unique charity, being the only drop in day centre in the city. The aim behind the day centre is creating a place for young people to feel safe, as well as accessing vital resources such as hot food, bathrooms, washing machines and one to one support. 

All their funding comes from donations and fundraising. From individuals, schools, businesses and community groups in the city, as well as local and national Trusts & Foundations. The lack of government or council funding means that to make a difference they are reliant on generosity, for example the 45 volunteers in the team along with people taking part in their events. Especially today, where we are seeing such a significant increase in costs at the moment, this help is crucial. 

Previous events 

In May, there was an exciting trip to the Houses of Parliament, where eight young people who were accessing the service, visited the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Housing and Homelessness) and the MP for Brighton Kemptown and Peacehaven. They discussed the issue of homelessness, asking questions to politicians. This is just one example of The Clock Tower Sanctuary giving young people an opportunity to have their voices heard. Another successful event was the Christmas Appeal which raised a massive £75,926 (which for reference is enough to fund the day-to-day running of our drop-in centre for nearly 15 weeks). 

These events allow for helping The Clock Tower Sanctuary to keep helping young people. When asked about their proudest achievements spokesperson Lorna said ‘Our proudest moments are when our clients move on from our service and get in touch to say that we had an important part to play in that. We have supported thousands of young people to get through the hardest of times and to get to that point. We put priority on their experience and on the feedback that they give. On all levels we consult and include young people in the creation of the groups that are designed for them, in the hiring of new staff and trustees and to constantly improve our service’. These life changing moments cannot be done without the help of others and another example of one of these all-important events coming up soon, is the Hike Against Homelessness. 

Hike Against Homelessness

The Hike Against Homelessness is a half marathon length hike (from Lewes to Brighton) and is taking place Sunday 7th July this year. At the moment, there is an early bird discount, with it costing £10 to sign up, so they recommend that you sign up now. 

As well as raising awareness of the charity, the money raised from people’s participation will go toward their £800k fundraising goal for the year and means that they can keep offering their life changing services. Including making sure they can continue to provide a hot, healthy meal, hot showers, essential items like clothes or a mobile phone and most importantly a safe, inclusive space 5 days a week to young people who don’t choose to be homeless.

Other Events 

However, if walking is not your bag there are many other ways to get involved with the charity. Alternative opportunities include their London – Brighton bike ride on 15th September which still has limited spaces available. Along with this, there is the annual Big City Sleepout which will take place at the i360 on 9th December. With a strong trend of young people’s housing situations worsening compared to last year and 79% of the Clock Tower’s clients now being unsuitable housing, people getting involved (whether that be fundraising events, raising awareness, donations or volunteering) is more vital than ever. 

The future for Clock Tower 

The Clock Tower Sanctuary is always working tirelessly to improve the lives of young people in the city and their vision is for Brighton and Hove to be a place where young people’s experience of homelessness is rare, brief and non-recurring. They will continue to work alongside the clients themselves along with their amazing team, to help them transform lives, amplify their voices and to achieve their potential so that this vision can become a reality. 

To sign up for The Hike Against Homelessness, click here or visit the Clock Tower Sanctuary website to find out more about the Hike and the other invaluable work they do for young people. 



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