Become a Nightstop Volunteer!
Thu 27th October 2016
The Simon Community Scotland, one of our community partners this season, is looking for people in Glasgow to offer their support to young people in the city at risk of sleeping rough by becoming a Nightstop volunteer.
Nightstop is one of the projects addressing homelessness we are proud to support this year and a third of the money raised at our Big Ibrox Sleep Out events in November will be donated to this new initiative.
Thanks to Nightstop, young people in Glasgow facing the prospect of sleeping rough on the streets will have the opportunity instead to get an emergency bed for the night in a volunteer’s home rather than in a homeless hostel.
The Simon Community aims to set up a network of beds in people’s spare rooms, throughout Glasgow, so that a young person at risk will be able to stay in their own private room, with a welcoming volunteer host, for up to three nights. Simon Community Scotland staff can then assist the young person to find a more long-term solution to what has taken them to the brink of homelessness.
Nightstop Glasgow is due to start operating from December and the Simon Community Scotland anticipates the service will, over its first three years, prevent 120 young people from sleeping rough or spending the night in an adult shelter.
Hugh Hill, Director of Services at Simon Community Scotland commented, “The decision to sleep rough is a huge one; however, once someone has slept rough once, the decision to sleep rough again is a much easier one. So, it’s vital to stop rough sleeping before it has begun.
“The reasons why young people end up homeless are varied. Most commonly, it’s a breakdown in the relationship at home and sometimes a cooling-off period allows staff to support the family to reconnect and talk through their issues.
“Sometimes, the young person is escaping violence or abuse. Or is facing issues concerning their sexuality.”
The call is being made for the people of Glasgow to join the Nightstop network, by offering up any spare rooms they have in their homes and becoming a Nightstop host. Before a host can provide a room, a full training, support and vetting exercise is undertaken by Simon Community Scotland staff.
Hill added: “The nightstop concept has been hugely successful in other parts of the country and we’re excited about the opportunity to deliver a safe, compassionate and homely alternative to potentially risky options elsewhere.”
If you are interested in becoming a Nightstop Glasgow volunteer and have a spare room, you can contact the Simon Community’s Pauline Hannigan on 0141 418 6980.
You can also find out more about the Big Ibrox Sleep Outs and how you can help the Foundation support Nightstop here.