A Society created for the purpose of continuing the pursuit for the eradication of poverty and homelessness. Achieving this through food collections, donations and information campaigns designed to tackle and ease the blight of homelessness and poverty in Birmingham. 

Students Against Poverty

All £3 membership fees and any donations to the Society will be donated to Birmingham Central Foodbank either directly or via Spareable (Download Spareable). The Students Against Poverty are partnered with Birmingham Central Foodbank and will be using donations to help get essential food and items to those who need it most. Spareable is an online supermarket for donors to shop for products that are donated to their chosen foodbank, through the spareable app we can shop for products that are on a foodbank's wishlist and when needed the foodbank will arrange for those items to be delivered to them and used to help those who are struggling with poverty or are homeless. 

We hope to setup a collection bin in the near future for students and staff to be able to donate food and other items desired by Birmingham Central Foodank to be delivered to them as required. We will keep you posted for updates on this. In the meantime, we would really appreciate it if you could join our society or donate to us, so we can use the donations for a worthy cause. We will keep everyone in the loop of how much donation we have received and at the end of the year hope to have a big figure that we can all be proud of as a University and as a community. We will be naming all of our members and people who donated at the end of the year to say thank you. 

The Problem:

With thousands of people homeless and struggling with poverty, it is essential that we contribute as much as we can, even if that is very little, as collectively it can add up to a larger impact that will help people. 

Figures from Shelter in 2019 reveal 280,000 people are recorded as homeless in England, an increase of 23,000 since 2016 when the charity first published its landmark annual report.

Shelter’s extensive analysis of official rough sleeping and temporary accommodation figures, along with social services records, shows that one in every 200 people are without a home. For the first time, its review of government data has also exposed that close to 220,000 people in England were threatened with homelessness in the last year.

The Child Poverty Action Group (CPAG) found that there were 4.2 million children living in poverty in the UK in 2018-19. That's 30 per cent of children, or nine in a classroom of 30

Mission Statement

In times as trying as ours it is the duty of man to use his powers for the benefit of his neighbour, namely; kindness, compassion, empathy, courage and love. There are a minority who perceive the execution of these powers as a costly affair, one that leaves them being less, they demand change without personal cost, with cynicism being their escape. Yet there exists a majority who embody these powers day to day, desiring mass change but without the support to achieve real impact . The singularity that unites both sides, is the hope for a better future, one where the problems of our today become the lessons of our tomorrow. An enemy of cynicism is hope and an enemy of hope can be overcome. 

For there is no greater power than the ability to spark the flame of hope in one another. Some flames burn brighter, some climb higher, but all must be incapable of extinguishment. Our problems are man-made, therefore they may be solved by man. And man can be as big as he wants. No problem of human destiny is beyond human beings. For the hope of man, is the dream of destiny. That undying hope, that boldens our collective flame, will unite our cause and all who serve it. Will you join us in this great endeavour? Will you be an advocate of peace and prosperity that serves as an example to burn the fire of courage in another not yet brave enough to wield its power? The flame of hope, once lit, will not quake in fear of any difficulty, of any hardship, of any foe, of any opposition, in the pursuit of what is right.

We choose to help tackle poverty and homelessness, on this hour, on this day, in this decade, because the problems of the world have now progressed to a state of hardship where we cannot rely on the minor struggle for progress from the few in exchange for the major struggle for conformity from the many. If a free society cannot protect the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich. 

If you believe in hope, if you believe in our power to change the world in the direction of our own destiny, then join our fight, help us to end poverty and homelessness. 

- Talha Ikhlaq, President of Students Against Poverty 

WAYS YOU CAN HELP THE HOMELESS OR THOSE STRUGGLING WITH POVERTY:

There are many charities and organisations that provide help for the homeless and those struggling with poverty, many of which welcome volunteers and have other ways you can help. 

 

1. Lets Feed Brum: 'With 10 million tonnes of food being thrown away every year in the UK, we’re bringing Birmingham’s cafés, bars and restaurants together to help feed people in these unfortunate circumstances. Added to that, we’re increasing the number of volunteers out on the streets by getting the community together to be the humans we should all be'. 

Lets Feed Brum welcomes volunteers every Monday-Saturday evening and also Wednesday and Thursday morning, they welcome donations of food and supplies but they're really looking for people who can donate regularly. 

To find out more about volunteering visit the link: Let's Feed Brum

 

2. Centrepoint - Give Homeless Young People a Future: Centrepoint provides homeless young people with accommodation, health support and life skills in order to get them back into education, training and employment. Centrepoint supports more than 10,000 homeless young people every year and there is a way YOU can help:

Volunteer opportunities can include:

  • Helpline advisor
  • Gardener
  • Reception support
  • Music tutor
  • Independent life skills coach
  • Catering tutor

You can also participate in events, fundraising and take part in 'sleep outs' and so much more. 

To find out more information visit the link: Get involved | Centrepoint

 

3. Crisis: Crisis skylight is the national charity for homeless people. How Crisis helps someone depends on their individual needs and situation. It could be with finding a home and settling in, getting new skills and finding a job, or help with their health and wellbeing. They use research to find out how best to improve their services, but also to find wider solutions to homelessness. Together with homeless people and Crisis supporters, they campaign for the changes needed to end homelessness for good.

Ways YOU can help:

From giving donations and fundraising to campaigning and volunteering, there is plenty of opportunities to get involved at Crisis. There are many different types of volunteering jobs to sign up to with Crisis, its definitley worth checking out!

Here is the link: Crisis | Together we will end homelessness

 

4. St. Basils: St Basils works with young people to enable them to find and keep a home, grow their confidence, develop their skills, increase opportunities and prevent homelessness.

'Every year around 1200 young people are housed in our 39 supported accommodation schemes, which for some young people includes their young children as well. We have a range of prevention, accommodation, support, employability and engagement services to help young people regain the stability they need to rebuild their lives, gain skills, confidence and employment and move on. The aim is to help them successfully break the ‘cycle of homelessness’ so that they can go on to experience a bright, fulfilling future and never return to a state where they are at risk of homelessness again.' 

Donations, fundraising, events and more:

Visit the link: Help Us (stbasils.org.uk)

5. Shelter: 'Shelter helps millions of people every year struggling with bad housing or homelessness through our advice, support, and legal services. And we campaign to make sure that, one day, no one will have to turn to us for help.' 

Face to Face Services

  • Our advice and support services across the UK give people one-to-one, personalised help with all of their housing issues.

National helpline

  • Our free emergency helpline is open 365 days a year and is often the first port of call for people facing a housing crisis.

Online Advice

  • You can find expert information about everything from reclaiming your deposit to applying as homeless, and you can talk to an adviser over webchat.

Legal Support

  • Our solicitors provide free legal advice and attend court to help people who’ve lost their homes or are facing eviction.

Research and Policy

  • We carry out ground-breaking research to understand more about the UK’s housing problem and then develop policies that offer solutions.
  • Reports   < Take a look

Campaigning

  • With the support of our campaigners, we call on the government and others to tackle the causes and consequences of the housing crisis.
  • Campaigns  < Take a look

How to Help:

  • Volunteer - there are many roles available
  • Campaigns
  • Events
  • And even more...

Visit the link: Support us - Shelter England

 

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