London hosted its annual Pride parade celebration last weekend – but it has been without a permanent LGBTQ+ homeless shelter until now.
The Outside Project is changing that, after teaming-up with Stonewall Housing to offer a place of respite for rough sleepers who identify as LGBTQ+ — up to 24 per cent of the nation’s young rough sleeping population, according to The Albert Kennedy Trust.
London Pride Statement :
We were determined this year to march at London Pride with as much visibility as possible for our most marginalised groups – our homeless friends & people seeking asylum. Oppressed & excluded by the system, society & our own community.. pic.twitter.com/F9826ZMx1Y
— The Outside Project (@LGBTIQoutside) July 8, 2018
The Dagenham-based project has previously existed on wheels, using Metallica’s old tour bus to offer shelter for homeless people in the English capital as part of a successful pilot last winter.
But they will be given the chance to put down roots after securing funding from London mayor Sadiq Khan’s Rough Sleeping Innovation Fund. Being housed in a building will offer more than just relief from life on the streets with a cultural and artistic hub, a café space, pop-up businesses and co-working space for marginalised groups.
Carla Ecola, founder of The Outside Project said: “We welcome the support of the Mayor’s office following a year-long campaign driven by London’s LGBTQ+ activist, artist & homeless community. We look forward to building on our work with Stonewall Housing, in solidarity with our community & the inspiring LGBTIQ+ centres & services that exist in London.”