A new campaign will build on the recent success in helping vulnerable people off the streets, in which two large hotels opened as additional emergency accommodation and shipping container homes were used as isolation units for clients displaying coronavirus symptoms. The campaign asks people not to give their spare change to those begging on the street, but instead to signpost vulnerable people to the services that can deliver real change in their lives. Read more here
Budapest has increased the capacity of its social institutions by creating further space for 500 people. However, further development is needed to meet self-isolation and social distancing requirements. Therefore, one of the wings of the City Hall building – later to be used as the Budapest Gallery – is being renovated to serve as a temporary shelter for the homeless who would like to voluntarily enter into quarantine. More information here.
The Municipality of Guimaraes has instituted a series of measures from housing for homeless people to providing tablets for students to enable distance learning and offering support for tourism focussed micro-enterprises. Read more here
Together with the Leeds Street Support Delivery Team and partners out on the streets in the day and night, outreach work is continuing across the city directly engaging with those in need. The city council is continuing to offer people that are sleeping rough or homeless a variety of help which includes access to permanent and overnight accommodation provided by charities, free food and tailored specialised assistance for those with addiction or other health needs.
The city is also supporting two initiatives called Covid-19 Protect and Covid-19 Care which aim to further support those without permanent accommodation during the crisis. The City is working with housing providers to identify suitable locations for people to self-isolate in should they start showing symptoms. And if further care is needed additional facilities have been identified and made available.
To protect the vulnerable group of homeless people in the corona pandemic, Athens has created a shelter with more than 400 beds. The three-buildings complex of seven floors was opened in April and is run by the City of Athens’ Reception and Solidarity Center. It offers accommodation in dormitories as immediate help and apartments for a longer stay, along with free meals and psychosocial support.
Since those without shelter are especially exposed to a possible infection with the corona virus, the city of Dusseldorf has rented another hotel with 34 rooms for homeless people. It offers single and double rooms during the crisis as well as medical and social care. Including those rooms, the city has provided additional accomodation for more than 175 homeless people. You can read more here (in German)
Hotels of the city have offered their facilities for those in need while the city council is allocating budget for additional emergency accommodation. This allows those vulnerable groups to reduce their exposure to the risks of being in public spaces. Read more here
“10,000 bed spaces to 730 unique individuals over the last 200 nights” is the outcome reached together by Edinburgh’s city council and Bethany Christian Trust. The volunteers and the Council staff receive now help from the Old Waverley Hotel, where they can have temporary accomodation while receiving support and advices. The hotel is also offering three meals a day for those in need thanks to many anonymous volunteers. Read more here
Munich is providing accommodation for homeless people who, because of their age or the existence of a previous condition, are particularly vulnerable to the coronavirus. Its social services department has also set up quarantine accommodation that houses households that have been quarantined. A separate quarantine object for vulnerable target groups (women at risk of domestic violence, old people, people with pre-existing conditions, etc.) is also planned. Two homes for homeless women have agreed to accept women from the women’s shelters as needed to help shelter women in the face of the expected increase in domestic violence due to exit restrictions.
Bratislava has prepared a quarantine town with the support of professional, medical and social staff that will serve its population of 4,000 homeless people for the duration of the COVID19 crisis. The quarantine town has an initial capacity of 50 people; the planned maximum capacity will be 230 people. Homeless people in Bratislava will receive necessary care and services if they suspect they have been in contact with infected person or have symptoms of the disease. This temporary facility is an important complement for ensuring the functioning of services and facilities for homeless people which are already in place in Bratislava.
Madrid city council, together with the regional government and the Red Cross, has arranged a hotel for 120 homeless people with mild coronavirus symptoms. Health professionals are monitoring their health. Rooms are equipped with tablets so that patients can reach the support team of social workers, psychologist and doctors. The initiative is part of the Homeless Emergency Plan of the city council. Read more here (in Spanish)
The Italian city of Genova has compiled a summary of the city’s measures in response to the corona pandemic. The presentation describes a stepwise approach to care for people, jobs and services first, while preparing for reboot and resilient and sustainable growth after the crisis. You can download the document here
Zagreb is opening several new public kitchens to help the poorest members of society to enjoy a hot meal. This is a collaboration between the City of Zagreb Office for Social Welfare and People with Disabilities and the institution Good Home, which caters for the poorest citizens. It is also occurring in cooperation with the Archdiocese of Caritas, the Croatian Red Cross, the Zagreb Red Cross City Society and the Parish of Sv. Antun Padovansky.
Bordeaux is supporting the most vulnerable in several ways, including telephone support and emergency in-person support at designated locations, including food distribution.
The usual support networks are facing major challenges. Volunteers are often older people, who can no longer volunteer due to safety concerns, while the lockdown restrictions make distribution very complex. In addition, unsold food from supermarkets can no longer be collected and redistributed, as it is impossible to maintain appropriate levels of hygiene when sorting through produce.
The Madrid City Council has established public-private partnerships to provide families in need with prepaid cards to buy food and basic necessities in the corona crisis. CaixaBank, through its Social Action and in collaboration with Obra Social La Caixa, has made a grant of €200,000 available to the City Council to assist 2,000 families in a situation of vulnerability. And thanks to the contribution of €100,000 made by the department store group El Corte Inglés through the Ramón Areces Foundation, prepaid cards to 500 families at risk of exclusion and new equipment to the shelters for the homeless can be provided. Through these partnerships, the Madrid City Council is strengthening its Family Emergency Plan to alleviate the effects of the health crisis caused by the coronavirus on the most vulnerable. Read more here and here (in Spanish)
Hundred beds for homeless people have been placed in the “Tejerona” Sport Pavilion in Gijon. Red Cross and Civil Protection take care of the people, the city council is in charge of maintance and vigilance. The installation also facilitates the work of other local associations such as “Covadonga Hostel” and “Economic Kitchen”. Read more here (in Spanish)
The City of Leipzig has expanded its facilities for homeless people. Emergency shelters are now open day and night and provide free breakfast, lunch and supper. A new facility with 50 extra places has been set up to answer to the growing demand due to the current exit restrictions. Read more here
Cardiff Council has provided additional accommodation at two city centre hotels for rough sleepers and those living in emergency accommodation to ensure that any individuals with underlying health conditions, or who are showing symptoms of Coronavirus COVID-19, will be able to self-isolate. Residents receive three meals a day and support staff are available around the clock to ensure the provision is safe and appropriate advice and help is always available. Read more here
Nice has opened a new reception site for the homeless and updated old ones by adding protection and hygiene measures recommended by the health authorities. Read more (in French) here. The city has also teamed up with nearby cities to launch a regional telephone hotline for psychological support to residents. Read more (in French) here. For those with a prescription, medical workers, or people who are exhibiting symptoms of the coronavirus, two drive-through test centres have also been set up. Read more (in French) here.
A special hotline for those with disabilities has also been set up, and an app through which the disabled can get information and ask for help. The city has made available tools like automatic voice transcription and sign language to make sure that everyone can stay up to date on the latest news and advice. Read more (in French) here.
The Zaragoza City Council has converted the ‘Tenerías sports municipal centre’ into a big dormitory for the homeless. This is in addition to 98 places already offered at the ‘Albergue municipal’. The services provided will include health assistance, three meals a day, and social services support in cooperation with the municipal social services. Read more here
In order to further relieve clinics, ensure good medical care and improve the situation of isolated patients, the city of Stuttgart is creating over 300 places for accommodation and care as a precautionary measure. The rented buildings are spread over several city districts and are operated by various emergency services on behalf of the city. They can be used by people whose quarantine has been ordered, but who cannot be quarantined in their own homes. Among the first users are refugees and homeless people.
Homeless people are housed in different locations in the French city of Nice, from night shelters and schools to hotels and youth hostels. In all places, meals are offered. The central kitchen of the city of Nice provides meals for people staying in hotels. Between 1,000 and 1,400 meals or picnics are distributed per day. Read more here (in French)
Face masks are handed out for free to homeless people by the Social Care Department and the city police of Brno, Czechia. The city has set up a container to collect used masks which are disinfected and then given out again. Brno provides information on the corona measures in six languages: Czech and English, and abridged versions in Russian, Romanian, Arabic and Vietnamese. Read more here
Homeless people in Leipzig are not any more able to sell street newspapers or to collect bottles. Public toilets and lavatories are closed. To help them, an initiative of Leipzig`s citizens has established a ‘Garden fence for homeless people’ where food, used clothes and sanitary products can be donated. Instructions for using are visible for everyone.
Düsseldorf is providing food packages and is arranging more shelters in the city. As of Monday, the municipal canteen at will serve as a distribution point for the Streetwork association. Düsseldorf catering establishments will take care of the delivery of groceries.
The party service Fröhlich will supply the day care centers and some emergency accommodation from Saturday. The Schumacher brewery will take care of the supplies and the delivery of the drug help center. The city has informed other institutions such as the GuteNachtBus, the poor kitchen and Fiftyfifty that they can send their needs and questions to the city. Read more (in German) here.
Bristol City Council estimates that 450 rooms will be needed to help house rough sleepers and homeless people. Mayor Marvin Rees has called on hotels and B&B owners to ‘step up’ by helping to house those in need. Read more here
Mayor Ada Colau has announced new plans to offer tourist apartments to vulnerable families whose current accommodation does not meet conditions to endure confinement. Further housing measures are focussed on helping homeless people through the crisis. Read more here
To avoid contamination in the winter shelters which can welcome up to 1,750 people every day, Brussels Capital Region, alongside the Red Cross, opened 15 smaller centres for homeless people as the city moves into a containment period. In addition, a mobile unit with medical staff has been set up, in order to allow for safe passage to hospitals, and to bring homeless people to these new centres.
Madrid city council is offering 150 beds for homeless people who do not show symptoms of the virus. Meanwhile, homeless people who do show symptons can go to an emergency centre for asylum seekers, where they will receive adequate health care.