BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific Arabic Spanish Russian Chinese Welsh
BBCi CATEGORIES   TV   RADIO   COMMUNICATE   WHERE I LIVE   INDEX    SEARCH 

BBC NEWS
 You are in: UK: England
Front Page 
World 
UK 
England 
Northern Ireland 
Scotland 
Wales 
UK Politics 
Business 
Sci/Tech 
Health 
Education 
Entertainment 
Talking Point 
In Depth 
AudioVideo 


Commonwealth Games 2002

BBC Sport

BBC Weather

SERVICES 
Sunday, 23 December, 2001, 04:03 GMT
Internet to help homeless renew contact
Rough sleepers
The government has vowed to reduce rough sleeping
A new initiative is being launched to give homeless people the chance to renew contact with friends and relatives this Christmas.

The charity Crisis is operating an internet cafe with computers experts, who once slept rough themselves, on hand to advise on how to send an email to long-lost loved ones.

The initiative goes online at an east London shelter on Sunday.

The chief executive of Crisis, Shaks Ghosh, said: "Broken ties with parents, children, partners and close friends not only push people into homelessness but keep them trapped in homelessness.

"Through the internet cafe, individuals will have a chance to make that first tentative step towards repairing broken relationships and healing the wounds created by that loss."

'Hidden' homeless

The shelter is part of a network of five being opened by Crisis throughout London.

They will help an estimated 1,000 homeless and vulnerable people and provide support services and companionship during the festive period.

The charity is calling on the government to tackle the problem of the "hidden" homeless - those staying in temporary accommodation.

It is estimated that there are around 400,000 living in shelters, bed-and breakfast and even sleeping on friend's floors.

Crisis says they need to be found more permanent places to stay as they are just one step away from ending up on the streets.

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
The BBC's Tony Morris
"The Crisis 'Open Christmas' scheme has been running for 30 years"
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more England stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more England stories