The only real medium to long term solution in Barrow is the homeless shelter but there is a long wait. The homeless shelter staff themselves ring us to see if there is anything we can do to help people that can’t come to them. CAP clients regularly under threat of eviction and young men we work with spend months sofa surfing or sleeping rough in derelict buildings. Through foster caring with people at the Church we see young people leaving care with no support or dumped in the same tenement buildings where the drugs deaths in Barrow have been ridiculously high and so leaves them vulnerable to addiction and prostitution. Even those in the homeless shelter have a limited time period before they have to go, or unable to work because then they can’t stay there.
We completed on our first Green Pastures house at the end of June 2020 and we are excited to have this home, now providing for those who were homeless and support and care for our residents.
The long term goal of the Church is to see people placed in sustainable housing, connecting with the courses we run and the education we can provide, growing in self esteem through volunteering opportunities and friendships made, moving into employment and then into their own long term place. To see people break free from the chains of hopelessness and have a vision for their future. For the church to offer practical hope and support and not just talk about it. To create business opportunities for those that receive help so that they go on to help and support others. That is what our partnership with Green Pastures is all about!
We have big plans to grow the amount of sustainable housing for those in need over the next few years.