A guest blog from our sponsor The Church Housing Trust
Some festivalgoers cannot bear the thought of not washing for three days and will either have booked a shower or be planning to queue for one on site.
Others will be happy to go a few days without paying too much attention to personal hygiene on the basis that they can have a lovely hot bath when they get home.
But just imagine if you had nowhere to shower, or even clean your teeth – for the foreseeable future.
For people sleeping rough in England, this is their daily reality.
Rough sleeping in England has more than doubled in five years.
The number of people without a home in England is increasing for many reasons. Benefit sanctions, a lack of housing, mental or physical illness, job loss, bereavement, relationship breakdown, addiction, and falling behind on rent, all add to the complex array of reasons that result in people having nowhere to live.
Wherever you live, you are likely to have seen people sleeping on the street. More than 4,000 people are thought to sleep on the street on any given night across England. But these visible rough sleepers are the tip of an iceberg. Thousands more people are sleeping on night buses, in parks or in abandoned buildings.
“It’s difficult to look after personal hygiene when you’re on the streets. So to move into a room with the toiletries really helped a lot. Made me feel human again.”
Scott, a Rough-sleeper from Cambridge
Church Housing Trust gives away £6,000 a week in small grants for homeless people. This includes providing funding for welcome pack of toiletries, towels, and underwear for rough sleepers when they come off the street.
We also provide funding for training, travel, clothing or other items that homeless people may need, and for which there is no government funding available. And when people get a home of their own, we will help them with the costs of furniture and white goods.
Because we know what it is like to be homeless and have nowhere to wash, we are sponsoring the showers at Greenbelt. We hope that whether you book a shower, or go without washing for a few days, you will think about those homeless people who have no choice but to remain filthy.
Please visit our website and donate today, or send a text donation while you are at the festival. It will give someone a fresh start!