Cambridge Street Aid

Cambridge Street Aid aims to help people in Cambridge to get off and stay off the streets.  

The Street Aid Fund offers grants of up to £750 to help homeless or vulnerably housed people in Cambridge City to find and sustain accommodation and employment or otherwise make changes in their lives which will help them avoid returning to the streets.

Individuals must be referred by an organisation (voluntary sector or local authority) that has assessed the individual’s circumstances and can verify that they are in need of immediate assistance that cannot be obtained elsewhere. Grants will be paid to the referring agent to apply the money for the purpose agreed. The Fund will not normally be used for crisis support. It is to offer planned longer, strategic help that will bring about change. Referring agents are therefore invited to consider the medium-long term needs of their clients and make applications accordingly, ensuring that the items in the application tie into a plan for the individual. However, support workers are encouraged to be inventive in what they apply for, the core criterion being that the grant must help someone get off, or stay off, the streets.

The request must be for a person that is a resident of, or has links to, Cambridge City.

Referring agents should apply on the application form. There is no set deadline for applications and they can be submitted at any time. Requests will be considered within 25 days. Applicants should allow at least 4 weeks before chasing up on their applications.

The fund has a limit of one award per recipient in any six-month period and no more than two awards in an 18 month period (timed from the date of the first award) – other than in exceptional circumstances. Please note that unsuccessful applications will not be counted towards this total.

Recent awards
  • Grant to cover the costs for a talented artist to attend a printmaking course at Cambridge Regional College, as well as art supplies and to contribute towards a photography course.
  • Grant to provide membership of Tai Chi classes at local community centre for homeless person diagnosed with Fibromyalgia, a painful musculoskeletal disease.
  • Grant towards purchase of a shed and garden tools for a homeless person to work an allotment plot
  • Grant to cover a rent advance or a deposit
  • Grant towards the start-up costs to set up small businesses.
  • Grant for the cost of construction certificates to enable people to work on building sites
Maria's Story
"In the summer of 2014 I was employed and had enjoyed an eighteen year career teaching and as a FIP worker. I had a nice salary and a four bedroomed house. Things in my personal life had reached a crisis point following the breakdown of my marriage, the death of my father and facing up to child sexual abuse. I was using alcohol to supress feelings I could no longer deal with. In July 2014 I was charged with driving whilst over the legal limit and subsequently lost my driving licence, followed by my career and then my home.
 
I realised I had to address my drinking and for me the only answer was abstinence. I attended ninety AA meetings in ninety days and was referred to Inclusion [an organisation helping people with addictions] via my GP. After several months of living in the homeless hostel… I was then referred by the Council to the Single Homeless Service… I will be signing the contract tomorrow for a room in a shared house via Town Hall Lettings [the Council’s social lettings agency]. I have also started a voluntary position close to the house and I feel so much more positive than I have in a long time.
 
After the most challenging time in my life I feel I have finally turned a corner. With the support of Inclusion and AA I have been happily sober for over two years, and with the help and support from the Single Homeless Service, I finally have suitable housing. I am so very grateful. I feel I now have a solid foundation on which I can build a positive future."
Matthew's Story

"On the 26th of October 2015 I became homeless after a disagreement with my family, I then lived in a tent in a wood… After about 10 months of trying to survive outside I thought to myself things are not getting better I’m just surviving not living, so I went to Cambridge City Council for help and a team for young adults helped me get in touch with Town Hall Lettings which is a letting agency that helped me get a room in a house in Chittering, Cambridge.


I’m very grateful for this opportunity and I’m now building mylife back together again and have now found a job and I'm much happier. I think it’s very important to get people off the street and into housing as soon as possible. It’s a very scary and dangerous place on the street when you think that no one cares about you and your mind starts to become wild"

To donate

Donations to the Cambridge Street Aid Fund are welcome and can be done in one of three ways

By text - Text CAMB16 £3 to 70070 to donate £3 to Cambridge Street Aid.  Please reply to the  Gift Aid text – as adding Gift Aid means we  can increase the value of your donation by 25% 

By justgiving.com -Visit the Fund page

By cheque - send cheque, payable to Cambridgeshire Community Foundation, to Cambridgeshire Community Foundation, Hangar One, The Airport, Newmarket Road, Cambridge CB5 8TG