iCare Cold Survival Kits

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Winter can be a particularly tough time for homeless people who are not only facing the bitterness of the cold that winter has to bring with it, but are also facing Christmas – which is a period in the UK of particular festive joy – alone. (Crisis Impact Report)

Another report by Crisis and in partnership with the Joseph Rowntree Foundation says that in 2015 275,000 cases of homelessness were recorded in England and one of the most troubling findings of the report showed that councils across England are struggling to support the growing number of single homeless people. (Crisis – Homelessness Monitor England)

Homelessness has continued to rise and in particular the number of people sleeping rough nationally having gone up by 55% since 2010. Most notably this rise is even higher in London which saw a rise of 37%. (Crisis – Homelessness Monitor England)

Defining homelessness: iCare like many others takes a wide definition of homelessness. Having researched and looked at how other leading organisations working in the field define homelessness, we agree that homeless includes the following:

  • People sleeping rough
  • Single homeless people living in temporary hostels, shelters and supported accommodation
  • Statutorily homeless households (households that are seeking assistance from local authorities due to facing imminent loss of accommodation
  • ‘Hidden homeless’ – people who are homeless but their situation is not visible or on the streets (such as squatters, people sleeping rough in hidden locations, or ‘sofa-surfing’)

The above reports and all others show that homelessness is a very worrying issue and the rate at which it has climbed over the last 5 years has been alarming.

The iCare Approach

The Cold Survival Project will be iCare’s flagship winter fundraising programme. iCare aims to deliver seasonal winter projects aimed at supporting those suffering from homelessness in the harsh winter whilst developing its long-term projects aimed at tackling homelessness with the wider community and agencies working in the field.

iCare is going to deliver a winter-long programme aimed at providing homeless and destitute people with a ‘cold survival kits’. The kits will consist of the following items to help them go through the winter with a little more ease:

  • Sleeping Bag
  • Rucksack
  • A hat
  • Gloves
  • Scarf

£30 will provide an individual with a cold survival kit. Supporters can donate or take part in fundraising activities to raise larger sums of money in order for iCare to provide more packs.