Jobs in the sector: Homeless Shelter Support Worker

The Bus Shelter MK is a much loved local charity which provides a temporary home – and much, much more – for people who would otherwise be sleeping on the streets.

We provide accommodation on a converted double decker bus and reclaimed building site units based on a former car park in central Milton Keynes.

Since we opened in March 2018 we have accommodated 43 people and advised more than 100 others.  Ages of our guests has ranged from 19 to 73 and the average stay is three to four months. 

We are now seeking an additional team member to assist our Shelter Manager in supporting our guests and also ensuring the site remains a pleasant environment both physically and in atmosphere.

The personal qualities of the successful candidate will be more important than formal qualifications, but if you have experience in working with homeless people or expertise in benefits or housing that would be preferred. The duties will be varied and it is likely that no two days will be the same.

What will you need to be?

  • Confident and able to make sensible decisions in unexpected situations.
  • Kind and caring but not a pushover! You will often be working alongside volunteers so will need to understand how that creates a different dynamic than when working with fellow staff members or service users.
  • Computer literate and able to research and understand various regulations and guidelines.
  • Presentable and able to communicate with all types of people as you will be representing the charity to visitors and external organisations in the course of your duties.

Pay and conditions

The role is for 20 hours per week but full time or job share considered for the right applicant.

There will be a lot of evening and weekend working but not overnights. There will also be some lone working.

The role is permanent and the salary offered will depend on your skills and experience.

Holidays offered will be 36 days (including bank holidays).

Our Service Users

Our guests are people who would otherwise be sleeping on the streets and who need a helping hand to return to mainstream life.  Often the role will involve convincing guests their lives can improve and helping them unravel the red tape and hurdles that make it so difficult for them to move on.  At any one time, 50% of our usual guest cohort of eight will be working. We do not accept guests with drug or alcohol addictions as we do not have the facilities to help them. 

Former guests have described being on the bus as “five star homelessness” and attested to the kindness of staff and volunteers as changing their lives.

Why not join us as we provide hope and a route out of homelessness?

To apply please send a CV and a covering letter to: info@thebussheltermk.org  

Please put Support Worker Application in the subject line. The successful candidate will require an Enhanced DBS Check in line with our safeguarding policy.

Blog Post

One Stop Shop for Homeless People in MK

You may be aware that the Ground Floor of the Buszy – the Old Bus Station – has been let to The Winter Night Shelter for use as a One Stop Shop for the Homeless in Milton Keynes.

Donna from Ridgeway Community Trust is currently co-ordinating the use of the Buszy and is looking for care providers that work with the homeless, vulnerable and those with mental health challenges.  They are offering the opportunity to utilise the Old Bus Station throughout the week. They are looking for people who want to provide their services in the facility and work with other facility users, signposting to other service providers where necessary. The facility will be provided free of charge to anyone working with the homeless or vulnerable.

The Homelessness Partnership in Milton Keynes is trying to achieve the following;

  •  A ‘One Stop Shop’ that connects cohesive services, charities and groups working in partnership.
  • Create a community centre that provides resources that prevent and support homelessness, supports the vulnerable and those with mental health problems.

At the moment there are some works that are being completed, but they are hoping this will all be completed by 1st December 2017, in time for the colder weather.

If you would like more information or you would like to get in touch regarding the use of the Buszy, please contact Donna: donnaelliott71@gmail.com

Blog Post Charities & Community Groups

Storage space desperately needed – can you help?

A Call to Action from Help Our Homeless MK

Help Our Homeless MK  community group are now in desperate need of storage space (either in, or close to Central Milton Keynes) to house donations they collect to run their services for homeless and badly-housed people in Milton Keynes.

So far the group has been working out of two garages, but have recently had to hand them back to the owners and are now down to just one garage and working from the homes of the many volunteers that support the group!

Ideally they need approximately 600 sq ft to allow space for volunteers to help sort items and, if possible, a space to allow homeless people to drop in for tea and a chat.

Do you have a unit or office available that they could use as a base at no cost?

Help Our Homeless has been running since 2014 and is run entirely by volunteers. The group provides much-needed donations of clothing, shoes, bedding etc to homeless people in Milton Keynes. Volunteers go out three times a week with the soup run and provide help and support to over 30 homeless people every evening.

If you have some space that you could make available, or know of anyone that can help, please contact Anna at Community Action: MK at anna@communityactionmk.org or on 01908 661623 or contact Marion at marion@communityactionmk.org.

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Follow Help Our Homeless MK on Twitter here or request to join their Facebook group here, where you can sign up to support the group as a volunteer and get updates about the work of Help Our Homeless MK and other homelessness and housing-related issues across the city.

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Community Fundraiser for Winter Night Shelter – 15 October

MK People’s Assembly are organising a community fundraising event in aid of Winter Night Shelter in Milton Keynes.

The event will take place on Saturday 15th October outside the Old Bus Station -at the Buszy Skate Park. It will raise funds that are so vital to help maintain the Winter Night Shelter services, particularly as the winter months are fast approaching.

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There will be live music and other entertainment as well as interesting stalls with information about the various community groups and projects in Milton Keynes. More information about the event will follow us – Visit MK People’s Assembly Facebook page for updates or follow them on Twitter: @MKAssembly.

If your group or a project is interested in having a stall, please e-mail: MK Assembly at mkpeoplesassembly@gmail.com.

Winter Night Shelter provides supervised overnight accommodation to homeless and vulnerable people who would otherwise be rough sleeping during the winter months. It works in partnership with several Milton Keynes churches that provide their facilities free of charge and is supported by a large team of volunteers from across the city, who come together to cook nutritious meals and provide a friendly safe environment each evening. Click here to find out more about their work. You can find them on Facebook: @wnsmk.

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MK People’s Assembly is a local group representing The People’s Assembly Against Austerity, a national campaign group against cuts made up of groups and individuals from across the social and political spectrum. Follow them on Twitter: @MKAssembly.

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Come and help raise funds for this important service in Milton Keynes!

 

Blog Post Charities & Community Groups

Connection Floating Support Looking for Volunteers

via MK Web:

[Based on the possibility of closure Connection Floating Support,] a housing charity that helps people avoid homelessness and achieve independence, were unable to give hours to their volunteers who have now gone elsewhere.

Despite having some funding cut, the charity are able to continue their work in Milton Keynes and are now having to start again and are calling for volunteers, vital to their work.

The charity wants to fight the stigmas associated with homelessness and continue to work with MKC to help people overcome housing problems which can come as a result of debt or addiction problems.

For the full story, and for details of how you can help, please go to MK Web.

Blog Post News from and for the VCS Volunteering

Funding Alert – May 2015

Welcome to our round-up of funding opportunities for charities and community groups in Milton Keynes. If you would like some free help to develop or find funding for your project, email us or call 01908 661623 to arrange an appointment.


Local News

Voting has opened for the Aviva Community Fund and several projects in Milton Keynes are seeking votes. The Community Fund offers support and funding to inspirational local projects and voting opened on May 1 and closes on May 30.

Among the organisations in Milton Keynes seeking funding are the Joint Civil Aid Corps, which helps build skills in young people, Age UK Milton Keynes for its Keeping Me Connected programme and The Harry’s Rainbow Charitable Trust, to pay for maintenance on a static caravan used for short breaks for bereaved children and their families

Also nominated are Kingdom Power, The East of England Peer Support Service for the Spinal Injuries Association, Dwarf Sports Association south east region, Young Photographers at Slated Row School, Secklow Sounds CIC, Inter-Action MK, Shenley Christian Fellowship Oak Tree Centre and Salford School of Gymnastics trip to Canada.

Organisations securing enough votes will go through to the finals on June 29.

For more information or to vote, visit https://community-fund.aviva.co.uk/cms/


AB Charitable Trust

The trust supports charities that defend human rights and promote respect for vulnerable individuals whatever their circumstances. The Trust is particularly interested in charities that work with marginalised and excluded people in society, with a focus on:

  • refugees and asylum seekers
  • prisoners and penal reform
  • human rights

Amount:  £7,500 – £10,000

Deadline: 22nd May 2015

Website


Royal British Legion External Grants

The Legion’s External Grants programme is open to applications. It is for groups supporting serving and ex-service people and their dependants who are suffering financially.

Applications for the following three themes will be prioritised:

  • employment and training
  • family support
  • homelessness and outreach

The typical award is below £20,000 – smaller applications are encouraged. It is a two stage application process.

Amount: up to £20,000 or up to £35,000  for salary for ‘homelessness and outreach’ projects.

Deadline: 25th May 2015.

Website


Vocational Learning Technology Fund

This is run by Ufi Trust for projects that demonstrate the potential for using digital technology imaginative ways to develop new services or improve access or delivery of adult vocational learning.

Amount: Grants up to £50,000 are available.

Deadline: 9am on 15th May 2015

Website


Feminist Review Trust

Supports projects that transform the lives of women. The Trust gives grants to projects in the UK and internationally that support women. In 2015 international applications will be particularly welcome in the following areas:

  • violence against women
  • disabled women and girls
  • women, sustainability and climate change

Amount: up to £15,000

Deadline: 31st May

Website


Funds for Square Dancing

There’s a fund out there for everyone,  if you are interested in square dancing.They are American, but will fund organisations world wide. The Callerlab Foundation supports and trains callers and the All Join Hands Foundation supports square dancing for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities.


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