The idea to set up Emmaus Oxford began in the mid 1990s when Jean Williams, an Oxford resident came across the Emmaus concept by chance. Jean had been volunteering with other homelessness organisations in Oxford and thought that the Emmaus model was the missing piece of the puzzle for providing actual support and a home for homeless people.
Jean wrote a letter to the Oxford Times making this suggestion, and the interest generated from from this led to a local campaign group being formed. This eventually culminated in the success of the project, with Jean as a founding trustee.
In 1998, Emmaus Oxford became a registered charity, and in 2005 St Michael’s and All Saints Charity gifted some land, along with a successful planning application to build a residential unit for 24 formerly homeless people.
In 2007, we partnered with A2Dominion and in 2009 they completed the building work for us. We opened the doors for the first time to homeless people in March 2009.
Since then we have gone from strength to strength, and in 2013 we converted the building next door to our community into further accommodation for four more formerly homeless people.
We would not have developed without the extraordinarily generous financial support from individuals, organisations and grant giving bodies, all of whom are too numerous to list here. Thank you all.