We have gratefully received £35,918 to fund two new spaces in our community for two years.

Emmaus Dover provides a home, day-to-day support, funded training and work experience for up to 27 people who have experienced homelessness and social exclusion – known as companions. The combined funding from Nationwide’s Community Grants Programme and Kent Community Foundation will enable us to provide two more companions with everything they need while living in our community.

This includes all meals, heating, lighting, water, Wi-Fi and council tax, as well as training, education, qualifications, counselling and support staff. It will also help fund a range of benefits, including a monthly allowance, holiday pay and a lump sum payment if the companion chooses to move on.

One of the spaces funded by the grant has been filled by 52-year-old Miro, who is now settling into his new home at Emmaus Dover. Miro said: “The COVID-19 situation was a big problem for me. I am asthmatic, so working with a mask on was not possible, and I lost my job. I had been living on the streets for about three months when I found out about Emmaus Dover.

“I arrived at the community knowing only 30 words in English, but the staff at Emmaus understood my problem and knew how to support me. Now, I can look after my asthma, I’m learning English, and I get to help people. I’m happy here. Emmaus Dover has given me a home and the chance to start a new life. It’s a very special place for me.”

Nationwide generously donated £25,918 towards the grant. Hannah Golding, Branch Manager at Nationwide Dover, adds: “At Nationwide, we believe that everyone should have a place to call home and it’s great to see the impact of our Community Grants Programme within our local community.

“The valuable work that they do at Emmaus Dover is truly inspiring and we are so pleased to be continuing to work with the team and companions in the future. On visiting recently, we have been able to meet with many of the companions and see first-hand how this funding will support them.”

If you’d like to offer your support to Emmaus Dover, please donate here.