Lottery grant will safeguard Hemel homeless centre

Day centre manager Wade Dingle with long-serving team members Ann Dean and Phil Brown
Day centre manager Wade Dingle with long-serving team members Ann Dean and Phil Brown

Dacorum homeless charity DENS is celebrating after being awarded a major grant from the Big Lottery Fund.

The £287,302 award will ensure the continued operation and development of the DENS Day Centre, which is the first port of call for many people who may be rough sleeping or sofa surfing or who have problems with an existing tenancy.

In the past year, DENS has helped 346 people with a hot midday meal, a shower or advice.

The Lottery money will safeguard the service operated from the Day Centre for the next three years and will enable it to be expanded to provide enhanced support, advice and development opportunities.

Many of the activities will be led by volunteers and those with direct experience of homelessness and will give people the skills and confidence to help them manage the issues they are facing, whether these are personal, health or housing related.

DENS CEO, Wendy Lewington, said: “We are delighted to awarded this grant from the Big Lottery.

“The Day Centre currently provides a gateway for those in need to the full range of DENS services, and to the support available from other agencies.

“This grant will enable us to ensure that we give those people in housing need not only the immediate short-term support they require but also the greatest opportunity to find a long-term solution to the problems they are facing.”

To find out more about DENS, see www.dens.org.uk