A big thank you to all of our supporters who have helped Julian House achieve its Christmas Appeal target and set a new record, with £166,116 donated or pledged. This is the highest total ever for the annual campaign – now in its 22nd year.
The campaign has sought to raise not just vital funding also increased awareness of the complex issues which impact on homeless. Likewise the extensive range of services which are delivered by Julian House – often in close cooperation with other agencies. Those projects include supported housing, domestic abuse services, access to work place experience and training, plus of course its busy emergency hostel provision and outreach teams.
Cecil Weir has been running the campaign for 20 years – “Although I have been doing this for a long time I was genuinely apprehensive about setting the target at £160,000. But the fact is rising demand and pressure on costs means that this is the minimum we need to underpin our services not just now but throughout the year. Supported of course by all the other fundraising activities that we do, such as our Sleep-Out events.
“The fact that the wider community have rallied round so enthusiastically is tremendous. As in previous years the bulk of the donations come in December and although they always tail off in January, this time it seemed more marked. However the last two weeks of the month saw another £20,000 come in which was fantastic. Huge thanks to everyone who supported the appeal including the Bath Chronicle and The Bath Magazine.”
An ongoing challenge for Julian House is the shortage of affordable move-on accommodation – something which is particularly difficult right now. Extra emergency bed spaces which have been funded by the government mean that the charity’s staff are doing much more of the vital engagement work which can take clients off the streets – provided there is somewhere for them to go.
Julian House has over recent years been successful in persuading private landlords to step forward and offer their properties, but more are desperately needed. The charity is keen to point out that it is they who would rent the properties and be responsible for their management. Offers of properties should be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org
Although the Christmas appeal has now ended Julian House needs ongoing support throughout the year. It’s website has details of events and activities where people and organisations can help. There are also volunteering opportunities. www.julianhouse.org.uk