28th September 2016: A project to help get people off the streets and into employment has been supported by Luton Business Improvement District (BID).
Luton BID has awarded NOAH Enterprises £20,000 to continue funding a street worker whose role it is to support people on Luton town centre’s streets into the community and employment.
Chad Sonara, director of Luton BID and store manager of Luton town centre’s Debenhams, said: “We are delighted to be part funding an outreach worker for Luton town centre, whose role is to tackle the challenges of street drinkers and homelessness on our streets. This funding is set to make a real and visible difference and fits with the BID’s commitment to ensuring our town centre is accessible and appealing, with a safe and attractive environment for businesses and visitors.”
Luton charity NOAH, thanks to Luton BID’s support, aims – in the months leading up to this Christmas – to help 45 people who are street drinking out of the town centre, support 15 homeless people into accommodation and help nine people into an alcohol treatment programme.
Jim O’Connor, chief executive of NOAH, said: “A huge thank you to Luton BID. The number of street homeless in Luton has increased by over 60% in the past year. The majority of people in this circumstance, as well as those at risk of being homeless, have an alcohol addiction. The scale of this is significant when you consider that we engaged with 242 street drinkers in the course of our work in the past year.
“Street Outreach is the first point of connection with these vulnerable people and is our opportunity to persuade these individuals to get on the staircase of services that will help them towards independent and sustainable living, and a far better quality of life.”