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The Homeless Outreach society is coming into its second academic year this September! As a society, we aim to help those vulnerable to homelessness within Leicester through fundraisers, collection drives (of items such as essential food, clothing and toiletries) and through raising awareness on campus.
Over the past year, the society has managed to achieve some incredible things! We’ve held a couple of social meetings, where members were able to mingle and get to know more about the society, and also held several fundraisers (in which we raised a total of £377.71 for several homeless charities within Leicester) AND held a massively successful donation drive during the winter months, during which DMU students and staff were asked to donate food, clothing, toiletries and sleeping bags. We truly had an incredible response to this collection drive, and photos of the collection can be found on our Instagram page (@dmu_outreachsociety).
With the world in the state that it currently is in, our previous methods of fundraising and raising awareness may not be entirely suitable, even if just for the time being. The society committee are working hard behind the scenes to devise a plan that will allow us to continue our charitable efforts whilst keeping our members and the wider society of DMU safe and healthy.
As a society, our main aims are to:
-encourage a space where a community of students who are passionate about the issue of homelessness are able to come together and thrive whilst contributing;
-maintain a relaxed and safe environment for students to contribute to the cause through fundraising, volunteering or spreading awareness throughout campus;
-increase awareness around the issue of homelessness on and off-campus, and provide educational links to resources where the staff and students of DMU can learn more;
-create links with external charities and organisations to increase platform and contacts to provide an additional resource for them to spread their missions.
So, how are we going to achieve these goals, especially with the current, lingering Covid-19 threat? We will:
-consider running occasional fundraisers or awareness campaigns on campus when appropriate and safe to do so, in order to raise awareness and funds. A full health and safety report will be done prior to any of these events, if they are to happen, as well as careful social distancing considerations;
-continue to run donation drives (in conjunction with several Leicester homeless charities);
-campaign to Leicester council and local governments to increase the work and priority of addressing the homeless issue in the city, through organised events and partnerships with organisations;
-(when appropriate) work alongside UOL Homeless Outreach and other DMU societies to run outreaches for greater participation at events and collections;
-work alongside 3 local homeless charities/shelters to support their work. This will be through supporting their fundraising events, collecting donations for their food and housing services, and advocating towards the homeless cause.