We are LGBTIQ+ colleagues, friends & activists who work in the Homeless sector & have lived experience of homelessness & the complex issues our community face. We volunteered to launch this vital service alongside the talented & supportive LGBTIQ+ community in London, launching at London Pride 2017.
We crowdfunded £11.5 in our initial crowdfunding, enabling us to run the shelter & community hub pilot over winter 2017/18. The shelter pilot ended successfully in February & the Community Hub continues to operate.
Heather & Carla attaching the banner to the Pride Punx float at London Pride 2017
The Outside Project is a homeless/crisis shelter & community centre in response to those within the LGBTIQ+ community who feel endangered, who are homeless, ‘hidden’ homeless & feel that they are on the outside of services due to historical & present prejudice in society & in their homes.
All agencies agree that we have demonstrated an important need for the community shelter & centre. We plan to operate all year round in a permanent LGBTIQ+ Community Centre.
We will then use the bus as an affordable dormitory for the LGBTIQ+ community as a prevention of homelessness during the summer period – for those who just need a quick solution for a week or two to get back on their feet. This will reduce the number of hidden homeless amongst our community.
During the winter months, we will pass the bus forward to other parts of the UK that need an LGBTIQ+ homeless/crisis shelter for them to use as a pilot over the winter period.
VISIBILITY, FUNDRAISING & PROMOTION
We attend endless events & fundraisers to promote the project, reaching members of the community that hadn’t considered themselves to be in crisis or at risk of homelessness. We run workshops at community events eg: Deptford Community Pride, Grassmovement Festival, Lush on Oxford Street, The Lush Summit, Teen Challenge.
We are very active on social media, building a 2k+ following across sites.
Daniel Vs. The World & Meth at Her Upstairs – Queer Goes Nothing Fundraiser
The wider community/non-scene:
Wherever the bus is parked we do community outreach improving awareness & services locally. It is especially helpful for us to attend HPU’s, homelessness services, physical & mental health services & drug & alcohol services.
We have presented the project at several appropriate meetings within the sector such as the East London Delivery Board, Homeless Link’s Outreach worker forum, Pan London Outreach Womens Network & the local council (to where the shelter will be based) multi-agency Homelessness tasking & targeting meeting & various support services.
We will continue to attend relevant meetings & encourage the sector to increase awareness amongst their teams about the specific needs of the LGBTIQ+ community.