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Project information

Shelter Cymru Live

Shelter Cymru needs to expand its services to meet increasing demand by adding Adviser capacity to Shelter Cymru Live - a national telephone advice service which is often the first port of call for an individual or family in Wales in housing need.

January 2019 - December 2019

Charity information: Shelter Cymru

Shelter Cymru logo
  • Need


    Shelter Cymru Live – our national phone, online and email advice service – has been operational in its current format since June 2015, following a successful pilot in 3 local authorities that was funded via a legacy from one of Shelter Cymru’s supporters. Since the launch of this service, need has grown to such an extent that we are now struggling to meet demand and many people are not able to get through. In the last 6 months, 3,926 calls to our phone system were marked as ‘abandoned’.


    Shelter Cymru is an independent Welsh charity (ie not part of Shelter England/ Scotland) founded on the belief that everyone in Wales has the right to a decent, secure home. Increasing Adviser capacity within Shelter Cymru Live will support a further 250 cases in Wales during a 12 month period providing free, independent, expert housing advice and support on the phone, online and via email. Callers with more urgent housing needs will be offered face-to-face support with a Housing Law Caseworker

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Help more people


    » Employ a full time Shelter Cymru live Adviser who can support a further 250 cases per annum.

    What success will look like

    An additional 250 cases will be supported through this project. Additional capacity will reduce waiting times and the risk of further abandoned calls.

    Aim 2

    Reduce impact on the public purse


    » Preventing homelessness costs less. It can cost £20,000+ to help people who have been homeless for three months or longer via various public services

    What success will look like

    Every £172 received via The Big Give will make a difference to an individual or a family either living in poor housing or facing/ experiencing homelessness in Wales.

  • Impact


    Housing is the key factor determining a person’s health, well-being and prospects in life. Over the past three decades, Shelter Cymru has been working tirelessly to help as many people as possible who are living in bad housing or with no home at all, but there is still much to be done. Today, 5% of people supported by Shelter Cymru are sleeping rough and a further 36% are classified as being either statutory homeless or imminently homeless. Shelter Cymru Live is their helpline - and lifeline.


    A Report published in 2017 states that over the next 5 years in Wales:
    • homelessness could increase by a third;
    • sofa-surfing is expected to rise by 48%;
    • the number of households in


    Donors can request access to annual statistics relating to Shelter Cymru Live. Donors wishing to make a major gift towards our work (£5k+) can meet our Shelter Cymru Live team to better understand the challenges and pressures faced in helping people in Wales in housing need.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £43,007

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £29,589 Staff Costs Salary, on costs and expenses
      £1,051 Direct Costs Subscriptions, insurances, etc
      £11,517 Project Support Office and technical costs
      £850 Capital Equipment and IT

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Shelter Cymru Fundraising £33,007 Guaranteed
  • Background


    Shelter Cymru Live is based in Swansea and provides support across all 22 local authorities in Wales and help is there for anyone who needs it. The highest level of demand is in Cardiff (1 in every 5 calls). Last year, Shelter Cymru Live dealt with almost 4000 cases. In over 40% of these, there were children in the home. Over 1 in 4 people who comes to us for help has a job, meaning that employment is no safety net for the housing crisis.


    Any individual or family in Wales who is either living in poor housing or facing/ already experiencing homelessness can come to us for help. Our services are available to anyone who needs us and are completely free and independent. Sadly, over 25,000 people in Wales (1 in every 124 of the population) become homeless each year. This includes 4,700 children. Almost 19,000 people were supported by Shelter Cymru last year. Homelessness can happen to anyone.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    An increased focus on homelessness prevention in Wales is essential, making Shelter Cymru best placed to play a part in tackling the housing crisis. Homelessness is averted in 95% of our cases (where the outcome is known). Shelter Cymru has made a huge impact in Wales over the past 37 years, helping over half a million people fight for their rights, get back on their feet and find and keep a home. Our campaign work has brought about policy and legislative changes that have helped countless more

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Ashella Lewis

    Ashella is Project Co-ordinator for Shelter Cymru Live and leads a team of advisers who help thousands of people in Wales each year


£100 will fund 10 calls to our helpline

I'm not the typical homeless person you might think of. I was already a pensioner at that point. I was a professional person all my life and I did not choose to become homeless. The fear of losing everything took over – it’s the little things we all have that gave stability to my life.

Service User