Project information

Bournemouth Christians Alongside Roughsleepers

B+CARS (Bournemouth Christians Alongside Rough Sleepers) aims to work together across the Christian, voluntary and statutory community to “help people get off, & stay off, the street”. Sleep Safe provides emergency winter shelter to help those homeless who want to help themselves find accommdation

December 2016 - November 2017

Charity information

Faithworks Wessex

Faithworks Wessex logo
  • Need


    Homelessness is a problem in Bournemouth. It has the 7th highest level of rough sleepers in the UK outside of London, and the official numbers from the 2015 Street Count have tripled in 2 years, while the Council budget has reduced by 25%. Between 50 & 80 regularly attend “soup kitchens”. And the numbers keep growing. Warm weather and being a popular tourist destination attracts people from all over the UK. In addition numerous rehab facilities attract people who often find themselves homeless


    The B+CARS community initiative brings local Church together to play its part in transforming that. One of the early initiatives has been to work with a local housing association (BCHA) to deliver the Sleep Safe project in the town. From December through to April, 7 churches have agreed to provide a night per week each where up to 12 rough sleepers who wanted to engage could find a safe warm space to sleep and from which they could get help to find accommodation and permanently off the street

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Hope in crisis


    » Providing food at times to maximise support opportunities (under cover).
    » Providing emergency beds beyond just winter to help change

    The over all aim is to get all the food runs undercover. There are still 7 outdoors. We would like to get support to running Sleep Safe all year long

    Aim 2

    Living Life


    » Creating number of assessment & inspiration Dream centres (“wells”)
    » Creating place of hope and opportunity to live a life of rebuilt self-worth

    The piloting of a drop in centre (hub) specifically for rough sleepers providing them with other and basic services to increase the pride of their daily living

    Aim 3

    Moving On


    » Practical support to help people develop new skills, take up new activities and find accommodation (esp. for low priority cases).
    » Signposting to specialist services

    Implement a model of supportive accommodation and the 'Life Works' project providing the necessary skills to get back working in society and able to find accommodation

    Aim 4

    Help to Stay


    » Provision of practical (home-start kits, Acts435), relational (buddies) & holistic support (in local community) so that they want to stay in own HOME

    Provide home start support which will result in those who find accommodation actually are able and wanting to stay in that accommodation.

  • Impact


    Ultimately we will want to see the reduction in the number of rough sleepers in Bournemouth. Expanding Sleep Safe, thereby giving a place and process to engage the homeless who want change in their lives, seeing more individuals either repatriated with their place of origin or getting material support in terms of more permanent accommodation. These results are demonstrated by costing the tax payer nothing, saving the local Council, NHS and Police budget ~ £20,000, realising donations.


    The public can become immune to seeing rough sleepers on the street and not caring about the systemic reasons behind this. Mental and physical problems exacerbate why people sleep rough. We deliver a continuous public awareness programme through a big communications push / roadshow / facebook. We have signposting to the necessary specialist services. We continue to build our relationships with key organisations who deal with this demograph - NHS, Council, Police


    We produce a yearly Sleep Safe report which details the statistics of those who delivered and those who participated and their outcomes. We continuously report on our activities and successes through facebook, twitter and on our website. Bespoke reports to any major donor are produced as requested

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £101,628

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £30,880 Proj Officer Full time
      £5,663 Admin-Mgt Support 4 hrs-week + 2 hr/wk for 5 months + 5 hrs/wk mgt support
      £5,809 Communications & Marketing Publicity (leaflets, banners, + comms work) + website development + contingency
      £8,721 BCARS Running Costs Office, insurance, travel, additional activities, contingency
      £9,500 Home Start/Acts435 Homes start packs, move-on furniture
      £21,240 Sleepsafe Worker BCHA Professional
      £14,700 Sleepsafe Venues 7 churches for 5 months
      £5,115 Sleepsafe Running Costs Equipment/materials+heat/light/water+cleaning and waste disposal+support hub

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Church Venues £15,300 Guaranteed
    BCHA £2,500 Guaranteed
    Gannett & Online donations £9,500 Guaranteed
    Sobell Foundation £12,500 Guaranteed
    Souter Foundation £4,000 Guaranteed
    Individual and Church Donations £10,000 Conditional
  • Background


    The focus of the project is on Bournemouth in general recognising that Rough Sleepers are either local or from outside the area. Rough sleepers are attracted to Bournemouth because of its location, weather and perceived ‘place to be’.
    Rough sleepers, often the result of relationship failure, can have physical and mental health problems. Mental health problems can be both a cause and consequence of rough sleeping and homelessness. Addiction plays a key part in the life of a rough sleeper


    Beneficiaries of this project the 60+ rough sleepers we help per month but also the wider community: Police will have fewer incidents involving rough sleepers if they are off the street and being helped; GPs will see fewer visits from homeless people whose health issues are exacerbated by rough sleeping; there should also be a reduction in A&E visits as homeless individuals have other support mechanisms; gaps created by the reduction in Council services due to funding cut taken up by B+CARS

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    We have a solid track record of delivering homelessness programmes and getting people off the street. We continue to grow and increase the number of people we help every year. BCARS, through Faithworks, has an excellent rapport with Bournemouth Borough Council (BBC) and the Bournemouth & Poole Rough Sleeper (B&PRST) team. We have run Sleep Safe for 2 winters in partnership with BCHA expanding from one venue in year 1 to 7 different locations last year with over 60 volunteers.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    David Chidwick

    Project Leader for B+CARS and Sleep Safe. Helps to link together all the existing activities and to be an ‘enabler’ for this large project.

    BCHA - Professional Staff

    This person plays a key role in helping us run our winter Sleep Safe programme. BCHA has been running such programmes for many years.

    Alistair Doxat-Purser

    CEO of Faithworks Wessex and chair of the B+CARS Steering Committee - ensures the project retains its vision and direction