WINTER SHELTER PROGRAMME CAPE TOWN BEGINS JUNE 5. SOME CROSSED WIRES between shelters and street people
There will be 10 extra mattresses in each shelter subsidised by dept of social development (all shelters and where not Coc is helping too ) . This is not generally known to many on the street or Soup kitchens so please help get the message out.
The places will probably fill up very fast as most shelters are already full at time of writing with only intermittent spaces available as a few come and go.
pets are not catered for. However couples are in a manner of speaking at some shelters which have both female and male seperate dormitories , and so are over 60s in certain shelters.
* CROSSED WIRES BETWEEN STREET PEOPLE AND SOME SHELTERS .
We know from some people on street there are problems theyd like to see addressed at shelters. Especially the process of access to shelters , the question of paying for shelters, and there are questions about whether some policies are properly carried out at all shelters.Few on the street are aware of not having to pay until one can afford it ..of how long one can stay. (apparently policy is that there is no time limit as each gets person ideally is given personal development plan to reintegrate ultimately in jobs homes or families and so on.. but the fact that people on street do not know this and continually tell one they told they are only allowed to stay 3-6 months (Haven) is a matter for concern that hopefully we can together find ways to bring the correct messages out
Assumptions by some supervisors we are told that everyone is a drug addict, and especially judgemental attitudes around this and the moving people on to other drug testing places without any assistance getting there . . And other issues, around which there seems to be much misinformation on the street and even by inhabitants of some shelters themselves..
Blame will help noone though. Is it possible to dialogue in a spirit of cooperation? I have met some wonderful managers and social workers. But one might like to see more transparency generally and more effort to empathise with street people problems and how the food tickets dont work for everyone due to distances and taxi fares for some ..and so on ..
Meantime there is the rains to consider and who else but shelters are providing space as best they can ? Perhaps we should be cognizant of that fact before we only point fingers?
* TSHWANE LEADING THE WAY DIALOGUING TO END HOMELESSNESS WITH HOMELESS PEOPLE.
At the same time can we voice our concerns on behalf of street people or even better BY street people, as for instance happened in public open forums which started in 2015 in Tshwane when 200 homeless folk were invited to listen and speak to City of Tshwane and other roleplayers https://homelessfriends.org.za/blog-homelessn…/may-10th-2018 a fact that contributed towards Tshwane being named as one of the top 10 cities in the world to end homelessness or close by 2030 by the Institute of global homelessness http://www.ighomelessness.org/
Lets hope Cape town is taking note ?
But meantime lets get this message about the winter programme out onto the streets , you and me, when passing people on the street, but we dont have to do it in judgemental way. If there is a lot of misinformation ( whether from peoples actual experiences with shelters or rumours on the streets ) and if people have had negative experiences at shelters lets accept that and encourage better dialogue.
And lets give credit to shelters and the good people that also work in them. Its not us taking people into our homes after all.
Can we respect everyones choice whether to enter the winter program or not (and understand the very deep underlying psychological/poverty/addiction related in many cases issues underscoring such decisions? ) and we can be cognizant that a short while after JUNE 5 the spaces will probably again be mostly full (with only intermittent spaces opening up ) and not everyone is going to get in.
Approx 6000 still wont have space whether they like to go in or not sadly. here is list of some shelters https://www.westerncape.gov.za/social-develo…/facilities/847
Carl Collison of Mail & Guardian shares the story of Siya Hlongwa – a 32-year-old transgender woman experiencing street homelessness in Johannesburg, South Africa (S.A.). Like Siya, many transgender women and men in S.A. are forced to flee their homes due to rejection, sometimes accompanied by the threat of violence, from their families, then struggle to find stable accommodation due to discrimination. In Siya’s case, she found temporary housing in a shelter for women and children of domestic violence, but was forced to leave once the shelter learned of her gender identity. According to Joshua Sehoole of Iranti – an organization that advocates for transgender and intersex rights – there are a multitude of factors that make transgender women and men vulnerable to homelessness, such as the lack of trans-friendly accommodation. Agencies and facilities like Iranti and Ithemba Lam safe house in Thambo Village township are working to help transgender-women and men in S.A. and hope to expand their capacity to offer a safe space to a greater number of people.
READ THE FULL ARTICLE HERE
Whilst HAPPY VALLEY SHELTER (65 people ) is full at moment , it changes every few days. even in winter apparently. I have to say i find Patrick the manager of HAPPY VALLEY SIMONSTOWN SHELTER an exceptionally patient caring person, with a very difficult job .
Gladly a gentleman we know from fish hoek Michael T who many would be concerned about was given a spot just before the rains a few days back,
Despite most of the Havens shelters policy generally being no over 60s we have got info that some shelters will accomodate
CERES MALMESBURG and SOMERSET WEST SHELTERS will admit over 60s incertain circumstances.(provided no extra care would be needed and the level of infirmity)
PAARL RETREAT still have spaces for under 60s.
We know shelters arent for everyone but i know many that are happy there when ive visted them there. It really deoends (do they have many freinds from street there and other reasons ?) ,,noone should be judged for not going to shelter either.see https://homelessfriends.org.za/street-people-sometimes-incompability-with-shelters.html
So when you see an older person on the street stop and explain this and contact us firstname.lastname@example.org ,there are many myths on the street about shelters not taking over 60s. we were also under that impression ..One does not always get consistent accurate information which is why we try and investigate a bit further.Feel free to contact us PENINSULA HOMELESS FRIENDS at to try and help in this regard
The City of Cape Town’s Social Development Directorate will be providing R450 000 grant to shelters is encouraging. As 7 shelters were given the grants and one in peninsula, Happy valley in Simonstown one presumes R65,000 will go this winter to the peninsula Happy Valley shelter providing around 16 more beds hopefully. with Several hundred homeless on street in peninsula, and over 60s not accomodated for in shelters, and with so many of them on the street its of course a very partial solution but nevertheless welcomed. Lets hope the 1000s and 1000s Peninsula public with business muscle power, food to share on the street, jobs to create, will take some initiative too.
READ FULL ARTICLE HERE
Research undertaken in 2015 by groundup magazine about availibility of space in shelters in cape town. Comments about homless not wanting to go in sheltyers are a complex issues SEE THIS PAGE for more background on that subject.
READ FULL GROUNDUP MAGAZINE ARTICLE HERE
20 August 2015
Non-profit organisations in Cape Town say they are doing their best to assist homeless people living on the streets of the city, but there are simply not enough shelters or beds. The City’s street people enumeration project counted 7,383 homeless, of whom 2,521 were sleeping in shelters.
Wayne Staner of Somerset West Night Shelter says, “When we run short of space, we refer people to other shelters.”
Staner says more organisations need to offer shelters and that there should also be more care workers on the streets working with the homeless.