How the Shelter has developed
The needs of the homeless are clear, both nationally and locally. In Kent in 2013 a rise of 50% in the numbers of rough sleepers brought together community leaders, Maidstone Borough Council, Porchlight, Maidstone Day Centre and others to bring about a pilot project of a Winter Shelter for the homeless in 2013-14 for a period of 8 weeks.
It was extremely successful and the original governing group became Trustees in July 2014 to take forward the planning to open again in 2014-15. A Charity was formed, funding was applied for, a Project Manager and Resources Manager were employed in October 2014 and the Shelter opened again in 2014, this time for 12 weeks, starting at the beginning of December and running until end Feb 2015. The success of the Shelter continued and opened again in December 2015 with 15 beds for 12 weeks. The Shelter opened for a fourth winter on the 3rd January 2017 with 15 beds and will close on the 28th March 2017.