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Helping the homeless

In each edition of 4 Business, we will be choosing a local charity to support, with a feature and a donation of £1000. Our chosen charity for spring edition is HARP, Southend’s leading homeless charity, which helps local people overcome homelessness for good.

HARP has recently opened White Heather House, a Women’s Hostel, which has increased the total occupancy to 174 bed spaces. This additional provision will mean the charity, that aims to end rough sleeping in Southend, can offer a safe and warm space to even more people that might otherwise be sleeping rough. However, HARP does so much more than provide emergency shelter and food for rough sleepers and fundraising efforts like this help HARP to continue to provide practical and emotional support to those that have been through a difficult time, as well as providing housing solutions and sanctuary to those most in need.

Key facts

In 2016/17… HARP helped 1,104 people

24% were young people

24% were female

11% had been rough sleeping

36% were at risk of becoming homeless

52% had ‘No Fixed Abode’

57% reported having experienced mental health issues

63% had experienced issues with drugs and alcohol

HARP’s Individual Fundraising Manager, Dina Jobson, said “At HARP, we believe that no-one should have to face a night, cold, alone, and on the streets, but more and more people are now at serious risk of homelessness in Southend and are coming to us at crisis point. Rough sleepers face intimidation and abuse every day, and are 15 times more likely to be assaulted which is why it is so important that they have a safe space to retreat to. Donations like this help us to continue to reach out to those most vulnerable and provide safety, warmth and ongoing support to help them overcome homelessness for good.”

If you would like to donate to HARP or find out more about their work, please visit