Project information

A Lifeline in Winter

The Lifeline Centre is a sanctuary for homeless and vulnerable people in Bath. We offer a warm welcome, basic supplies like food and clothing and practical help to solve complex problems.

Thank you to Fidelius Group for their generous pledge to this campaign

Lifeline is a permanent, essential service for homeless people in Bath

Charity information: Genesis Trust Bath

Genesis Trust Bath logo
  • Need


    People come to Lifeline desperate: cold, hungry, homeless or facing eviction with no friends or family to help. Many of them have no local connections so have no right to accommodation in Bath, leaving them with literally nowhere to go. They can suffer from complex health and emotional problems and many are destitute, marginalised & forgotten. Our visitors need a warm, safe refuge away from the streets and more intensive support to turn their lives around.


    Our team of skilled staff and volunteers at Lifeline offer a warm, non judgmental welcome and emotional support to Bath's most marginalised people. We plan to provide more intensive individual support to enable them to start to turn their lives around. When they are ready, we help them find a home, tackle addiction, access healthcare and address underlying problems such as debt. We then provide more structured support to enable visitors to gain the skills they need to live independently.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Meet the basic needs of visitors.


    » Offer hot food, warm clothing, washing facilities & basic equipment to help clients cope with life on the streets.

    What success will look like

    Last year at Lifeline we received 7965 visits from homeless and vulnerably housed people. We provided clothing, food & sleeping bags. Sadly we expect this to increase with demand.

    Aim 2

    Develop positive relationships with visitors.


    » Staff & volunteers invest time to getting to know clients, developing relationships & gradually gaining their trust.

    What success will look like

    We work with clients to record their progress based on their own objectives and measure against a set of nationally recognised criteria.

    Aim 3

    Enable homeless and vulnerable people to tackle housing, health and financial problems.


    » We advocate on our client’s behalf with services and other agencies to access housing, health care, emergency grants, debt & legal advice.

    What success will look like

    Lifeline has a track record of successfully referring clients for housing, specialist health care, emergency grants etc. Last year we supported 500 individuals.

    Aim 4

    Help visitors to reintegrate into society and become active members of the community.


    » Provide long-term emotional and practical support to enable homeless & vulnerable people gain the skills they need to live independently.

    What success will look like

    Our Pathways programme works individually with people to support them long-term to reintegrate. We measure outcomes such as courses attended, volunteering and employment activity.

  • Impact


    A warm welcome from a well-briefed team can change lives. We build trust with people and develop long-term relationships. With increased intensive support people will make positive changes in their lives; finding accommodation, avoiding eviction and overcoming health issues. Once their lives have stabilised, we work with people long-term, using their own strengths, to build skills and resilience. Transformation can happen - we have volunteers at Lifeline who started out homeless themselves.


    We invest in personal relationships with clients who in turn tend to show respect to staff, volunteers and each other. We aim to minimise risk around funding for Lifeline by having a balanced mix of income sources including grants & trusts, community fundraising, individual and institutional giving.


    Donors who agree to be contacted by us will receive a regular newsletter featuring all the Genesis projects, individual client stories, volunteer and fundraising news. Lifeline is featured on our website and social media with information regularly updated. We can provide specific reports on request

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £16,000

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      Amount Heading Description
      £13,000 Staff Staff costs to provide intensive individual support to solve immediate problems and transform lives
      £600 Support Management & administration
      £1,000 Utilities Heating & lighting
      £1,000 Training For staff & volunteers eg mental health issues
      £80 DBS service Disclosure & barring service checks for new volunteers
      £320 Publicity Materials to make clients aware of services
  • Background


    For people fleeing violence or other issues, Bath appears a wealthy, pleasant refuge. It can come as a shock that with no local connection they have no housing rights here and can get little help. Bath’s beauty also hides deep inequalities - an appalling 9 year difference in male life expectancy between the poorest and richest suburbs for example. 4 areas are in the most deprived 20% in the UK. One recently entered the most deprived 10% with 37% of kids in poverty and 43% of adults unemployed.


    Lifeline welcomes 30 to 60 visitors a day. 70% are officially homeless and over half are sleeping rough or ‘sofa-surfing’. They face multiple problems: 35% live with mental health issues, 22% are physically ill or disabled and 19% have learning disabilities. More than half are alcohol dependent, 42% have drug addictions and almost all long term unemployed. They often have very low self-esteem and have lost hope in the future. Many need long-term, intensive support to improve their situation.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Genesis staff & 700 volunteers have been providing food, clothing, advice and practical help to Bath’s homeless community and those facing deprivation in the city for 23 years. Lifeline’s 3 staff members & 16 regular volunteers – some were once homeless themselves - bring people and services together to tackle problems that cause homelessness. Because we are not government funded, we can provide practical help to many clients with no local connection who have no right to be housed here.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Paul Solly

    Manages the Lifeline Centre. Paul was CEO of Genesis Trust for 15 years before moving to focus on client development.

    Ivana Bensted

    Focuses on building ongoing relationships with Lifeline visitors and supporting them to make positive changes.

    Sean Sutton

    Lifeline Deputy Manager specialising in advocacy - bringing the multiple specialist services clients need together to make change happen.


£20 will pay for an individual support session to help a homeless person turn their life around

“It was cold, lonely and horrible being homeless. I had exhausted all my lines of help and was living in a tent near the riverbank. I turned up at Lifeline freezing and soaking wet and was immediately given clean, dry clothes and hot food.”

Bridget, Lifeline visitor