We are a community cafe, first established in 1996. To help parents stay positive and get through this difficult time, Treats Cafe have been giving away free children's meals, with every order over the past few months to help support low income families, whilst schools are closed.
Due to our new contactless delivery system we can now offer food deliveries to homeless families living in emergency accommodation. We believe all children should be entitled to a freshly cooked, hot meal, therefore we're raising funds which will enable us to provide free hot food for homeless families too.
Weston's homeless hostels provide year around accommodation, overnight help, security, support workers, fresh bedding and cleaners for regular upkeep of kitchens & bathrooms which are topped up with toilet rolls and washing up liquid. Designed especially for homeless families, one hostel includes laundry facilities, private bathrooms & kitchens stocked with new kitchenware. The only thing they have been unable to provide is food and education.
Currently, single parents are asked to go through a referral process before they are issued a voucher to use the local food bank. This means having to take their children out, during the pandemic, to queue for an emergency food pack, enough for just 2-3 days, containing frozen & tinned produce. It is not the most nourishing food to raise a growing child on.
Homeless adults who use the kitchen facilities are likely to have mental health conditions, which make it difficult to ask for food donations in the first place. Even when the food bank has provided ingredients, they may lack the skills required to cook a hot meal from scratch.
Some local companies have been giving cold leftovers & out of date food to rough sleepers. However this can have a negative impact on physical & mental health and increases doctors visits which could have been prevented by simply providing fresh, nutritious food.
We would like to take some of the pressure off our local food bank who are now struggling for volunteers & donations due to this epidemic. By providing healthy food, which has been freshly cooked, this project will reduce hunger & sickness whilst improving the mental health & wellbeing of homeless families. Our aim is to provide hot food on a regular basis throughout the year.
Mental health statistics in homelessness:
- In 2014, 80% of homeless people in England reported that they had mental health issues, with 45% having been diagnosed with a mental health condition.
- Homeless people are 13 times more likely to be a victim of violent crime than the general public, and are 47 times more likely to be a victim of theft.
- In 2017-18 The Quartet community Foundation reported, 2,028 young people aged 16-24 in the West of England presented to their council as homeless or at risk of homelessness.
- Studies have reported a higher prevalence of mental health problems in the homeless population in comparison to the general population, including major depression, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. Statistics suggest the prevalence of mental health conditions in this population to be at least 25–30% of the street homeless and those in direct access hostels.
- The most prevalent health problems among homeless individuals are substance misuse (62.5%), mental health problems (53.7%) or a combination of the two (42.6%). In England, given that these problems are causally linked with homelessness, they add significantly more costs to homelessness due to the need for health and social care support. Unfortunately, the exact figure of estimated costs is unavailable at present.
- Like many marginalised groups, the relationship between homelessness and mental health can be two way. Many homeless people cite mental health problems as a reason for being homeless - 26% of homeless people in the UK (this is double the percentage of that in the rest of the EU).
Any contribution large or small will be hugely appreciated.
Any excess will be carried over to the following month to help us keep this up throughout the year. Together we can make a difference. Thank you - The team at Treats Cafe