Worthing night shelter set to provide homeless residents somewhere to sleep this winter

Exterior shot of the night shelter at 24 Marine Place, Worthing

Mapping a route out of homelessness

Worthing Borough Council has opened a new night shelter, meaning homeless people in the town will have somewhere warm to sleep this winter.

The night shelter, which has space for 20 people, is located in a Council-owned building at 24 Marine Place in Worthing and will provide not only a warm place to sleep but also help tackle the root causes of homelessness.

Council staff have been working to get the building, which was previously home to the Find it Out information centre, ready for opening. The shelter will be run by Worthing Borough Council on a temporary basis during the winter months and will provide night staff and security. The project is also being supported by volunteers and other organisations who will help with food, recreational activities and one-to-one support.

People using the shelter will also work with staff in the Council’s housing team to agree housing and support plans that will help map a route out of homelessness. Those without a local connection to Worthing will be able to access the shelter, while staff help support them to make homelessness applications to other authorities.

Services provided to night shelter residents

The Council will also work with partners including Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, West Sussex County Council’s Adult Social Care team and the Probation Service to try to overcome the main barriers to housing.

Health and social care charity Change Grow Live (CGL) will provide substance misuse support to the shelter’s residents. Local homelessness charity Turning Tides will be on hand to help with residents’ immediate needs as well as provide support for those struggling with mental health and substance misuse issues.

The Council will also be working with Health Central Surgery in Stoke Abbott Road to help those in need of medical support or Covid-19 and flu vaccinations.

Food is being supplied by a variety of voluntary groups, charities and local restaurants. A number of churches in Worthing that have previously run night shelters have helped furnish the shelter with beds.

“An invaluable resource for the Council”

Cllr Emma Taylor, Worthing’s Cabinet Member for Citizen Services, said: “This new night shelter is set to be an invaluable resource for the Council and will allow us to provide direct help to homeless people in the town.

“The shelter is much more than a warm bed for the night – it will also act as a central hub for the Council and our partners to support people with issues like addiction and mental health as well as work with them to secure and retain more permanent housing in the future.

“Before the pandemic I was a night shelter coordinator, so I know first hand the value that volunteers bring. Providing food and warmth is of course vital, but to sit alongside each other to talk and eat, play games, watch movies and relax in good company is where the magic happens. Companionship is vital for anyone to thrive.”

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