A count to establish the number of rough sleepers in Charnwood has been carried out by the borough council.
During the early hours of Wednesday, November 22 council staff and volunteers checked 46 locations in Loughborough, Syston and Barrow upon Soar where rough sleeping had been reported in the past two years. No-one was found sleeping rough, but two tents were found in a car park off Ashby Road in Loughborough, indicating people had been sleeping there.
The aim of the count is to establish a clearer picture of the number of rough sleepers and it follows guidelines set by Homeless Link, a charity which works with organisations involved in supporting homeless people. A verifier from the charity attended the count.
Alison Simmons, head of strategic and private sector housing at the council, said: “Each year, local authorities are required by government to give an estimate of the number of rough sleepers or do an actual count on one day.
“We carried this out on Wednesday and we will pass our findings on to the government which will help build a national picture of rough sleeping.
“I’d like to thank all our partner agencies and volunteers for their support on the night.
“I would also like to take this opportunity to encourage people to get in touch with us if they suspect someone is sleeping rough.
“If we can talk to the person directly then we can make sure they are aware of the support and services available to them which may be able to help them off the streets and into longer-term accommodation.”
The support available to rough sleepers in Charnwood includes:
- The Bridge’s homelessness transitions team which provides intensive one-to-one support to anyone aged 18 or over who is sleeping rough or at risk of sleeping rough to help them access and sustain accommodation. www.thebridge-eastmidlands.org.uk/homelessness-transitions-service
- The No Second Night Out scheme which provides somewhere for rough sleepers to stay while the homelessness transitions team help them to secure longer-term accommodation. There are three No Second Night Out beds across the region including one at the Falcon Centre in Loughborough
If you are worried about someone who may be sleeping rough in Charnwood please call the housing options team on 01509 634567 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively, send an alert via the national StreetLink service by visiting www.streetlink.org.uk.