Highway Vineyard church have been a part of to tackle homelessness in their community. Like so much this year, the pandemic has meant that previous ways of doing things have had to change. Read on to find out more!
“NEWway Project was set up back in 2013 by a small group of church leaders in Newham in response to the homelessness crisis. It started as a very small and short term winter night shelter, and has now grown into a six month winter circuit night shelter. 14 churches from all denominations across the borough open their doors to 15 guests each evening. As well as the night shelter the charity also has a day centre (NEWday) open five days a week in East Ham where guests from the night shelter and others can come and receive wrap around support for a whole host of things from a number of advocates.
Highway Vineyard Church has been a part of this journey, playing our role as one of the host churches who every year, opens up our doors and invites in 15 guests for a warm nights sleep, good hot meal, warm shower and bed for the night.
Due to the pandemic, this year has looked completely different for NEWway. The shelter moved into a local hotel but we were still able to be a part of this change, along with other churches. Every couple of weeks we sent two volunteers in for an evening to serve food and sleep over at the hotel (a welcome change of scenery)! There have been so many good news stories of guests finding accommodation and a place of belonging in the community, God has been faithful and blessed the work NEWway Project does.
We have been grateful to be able to be a part of that journey along with the other churches across the borough to play our part in helping to find a solution to homelessness in Newham.