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Contactless ‘giving points’ to be set up in Bournemouth

CONTACTLESS “giving points” will be set up across Bournemouth and Poole to enable people to donate £3 to help people sleeping rough.

The initiative is part of the Change for Good fund to help homeless people make positive moves off the streets.

The fund has already raised £10,000 in donations to its Just Giving page.

But those behind the scheme hope the contactless points will raise even more cash.

Change for Good is run by the Homelessness Partnership for Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole made up of local charities, businesses and public sector organisations.

Work is underway to set up ‘giving points’ across Bournemouth and Poole town centres where local people can simply tap a payment card at a designated donation point to be able to make a set donation of £3 to help local people off the streets and prevent rough sleeping.

The whole donation is guaranteed to help homeless people locally. It is hoped that a number of contact points will be installed within weeks.

In the last year more than 400 people who were rough sleeping or precariously housed have been helped into emergency accommodation by the council and its partners through the ‘Everyone In’ initiative.

The partnership has also supported 118 people to make positive moves into more secure longer-term housing. The funding raised by Change for Good goes to local charities who work directly with people who are escaping homelessness, complementing the statutory support by the council.

Alistair Doxat-Purser, chair of the Partnership Forum, said: “As Covid-19 restrictions ease and the high streets open up, the partnership is raising the profile of Change for Good to give members of the public an alternative way of helping those who are seeking to escape homelessness.

“Change for Good and the generosity of local people had already made a big difference.

“The first successful application for funds helped an individual in temporary accommodation to move into their own independent accommodation by providing basics like a fridge/freezer.

“This in turn opened up a space for someone who had been on the street to move into their now empty space in temporary accommodation – a double win. Other applications have included one-to-one coaching with a trauma support worker, equipment for day-time support activities, phone power-banks, and replacing identification.”

Chairman of the Bournemouth Town Centre BID, Martin Davies said: “We are really proud to be supporting Change for Good.

“We know that many people have been facing tough times on the streets and this is an incredibly positive initiative to help them access the support services they need.

“Change for Good is an excellent way of helping them do just that and the Town Centre BID is delighted to give its full backing.”

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