In addition to providing a base for Street Pastors, a hub for Foodbank, meals and clothes for the homeless, the community centre now operates a winter night shelter three nights a week, with showers, clean up and laundry services for people living on the streets of Gravesend.
Vicki Clarke, Community Centre Manager said: “Homelessness is definitely getting worse, so by the time people come in here they’re generally at crisis point. I’d say we’re probably on speed dial for most of the guests that come in here as the person they call when there is a crisis. We are the safe person and the safe place. And that’s really hard to come to terms with when you know that you’re the only person in the world that they feel they can turn to.”
Paul Playford, Grants Officer from Methodist Insurance Fund, said: “The incredible difference that Gravesend Methodist Church is having in its town centre is humbling, particularly the work they are doing to help the most vulnerable in the community. More than anything, the church is providing hope, love and care to those who need it the most and we are very proud to support the work they are doing.”
Phase 2 of the Gravesend Methodist Church’s C21st Project, which is focused on remodelling the front town-facing façade of the church, will be very close to completion by Spring 2020. To learn more about how Gravesend Methodist Church are supporting people with homeless experience to have a voice and regrow their lives, watch this video about the centre’s 10-week drama project, Walk Tall ‘Staying Alive