As July temperatures hit record highs across London and the South of England, St Mungo’s staff are providing extra support for people who are sleeping rough in the hot weather.
St Mungo’s 18 outreach teams usually go out late at night and early mornings to help people who are rough sleeping in cities across the south and south west of England.
However, in this week’s hot weather across the country, in addition to finding routes away from the street, teams are running extra welfare checks, giving out water and sunscreen and supporting people whose health is poor.
Kathleen Sims, Head of Outreach at St Mungo’s, said:
“Our aim is always to help as many people to access safe and secure accommodation as possible. Rough sleeping is harmful and dangerous at any time, however this is increased when temperatures either rise or drop dramatically.
“If people are already in poor physical and mental health, then continued exposure to heat, including dehydration, sunburn or heatstroke can exacerbate problems. That’s why, as well as talking about ways off the streets, our outreach teams are working to provide extra water, sunscreen and support during the warmer weather.
“If you are concerned about someone sleeping rough, we would urge people to get in touch via the StreetLink website streetlink.org.uk to help connect someone with their local service as soon as possible. Or if you think someone sleeping rough requires medical attention, call 999.”
St Mungo’s is one of the largest providers of outreach services in the country with teams in London, Bristol, Brighton, Reading, Bournemouth and Poole, Essex and Oxford.
Advice for the public
• Contact StreetLink to help connect people sleeping rough to local services www.streetlink.org.uk
• Call 999 if you think someone requires urgent medical attention
• Hand out water and sunscreen if you think someone is suffering from the heat
• Donate to St Mungo’s to help us get more people off the streets
• Volunteer with First Response or our Outreach teams
For more information visit www.mungos.org/hot-weather