Norwich Street Aid – the community’s response to rough sleeping in Norwich city centre
A new fundraising campaign, Norwich Street Aid, will be launched on Thursday 10 October which will see businesses, charities and the community working together to tackle the issue of rough sleeping in the city centre. The number of people on the streets in the region and across the UK is steadily increasing. The campaign uses the latest contactless technology to enable people to give at a tap of their phone or card.
The first donation will be made at The Forum by the Lord Mayor of Norwich during the launch. The payment terminal will be available in The Forum for anyone wishing to make their own donation.
Norwich Street Aid has been made possible through partnership working between Norwich Business Improvement District (BID), Pathways and Norfolk Community Foundation. Using the latest contactless technology, the public will be able to contribute towards a central funding pot through donations via the Norfolk Community Foundation.
The campaign is the vision of Norwich BID and a response from the business community who were concerned about the level of people rough sleeping on the city’s streets. Stefan Gurney, Executive Director of Norwich BID said, “Rough sleeping and street begging is becoming increasingly visible in Norwich, the campaign uses the latest technology to raise crucial funds, to enable those on the streets to receive practical support to help them secure accommodation. We have worked closely with the Pathways team to find a vehicle to leverage funds from the community”.
According to the Office for National Statistics an average of two homeless people died each day in England and Wales during 2018. This is an increase of over 22% since 2017.
Claire Cullens, Chief Executive of Norfolk Community Foundation said, “Rough sleeping is a very visible and worrying issue in Norwich, and we are proud to be a part of the community response that enables support services, businesses and local people to come together and take action.”
Businesses and organisations around the city can show their support of the scheme by displaying contactless-enabled posters in their premises. Customers will be able to tap and scan to find out more about the scheme or to donate. There has already been a fantastic response from the business community, with many companies already keen to sign up and support the new initiative.
Businesses across the city will be given the opportunity to promote the scheme via contactless payment technology. This service will help to gather funding and resources that can help the Pathways team tackle rough sleeping within the Norwich area.
Lesley Burdett, Chair of Pathways said, “We are really pleased to be partnering with Norwich BID and Norfolk Community Foundation on this initiative. The donations made will have a real impact on the lives of individuals we work with in Norwich”.
Giving to Norwich Street Aid is easy, just visit: norfolkfoundation.com/norwich-streetaid. Each donation contributes to a meaningful sum that will make a real difference to someone’s life. All funds raised will be used to assist those rough sleeping in Norwich and will cover the costs of items such as training courses and workshops, household items for a new home, uniform for a new job, and trips to help individuals reconnect with friends and family.