Using your change for action has never been easier

Published Wednesday, 06 October 2021

A project that is helping rough sleepers in Coventry has received further backing from a major business in the city

Photo - Left to right: Kerrie Pritchard – Senior Rough Sleeping Outreach Worker at Coventry City Council, Alisha Probert, Customer Service Specialist at Coventry Building Society (CBS), Cllr David Welsh, and Paul Merrick, Area Manager CBS.

Change into Action is an alternative giving scheme.  All the money donated goes directly to change the circumstances of rough sleepers.

Now, people who want to offer cash support, can also donate using a new touch point.

Coventry Building Society, working with the Council, and other agencies are providing consoles that allow people to make a donation via a contactless card payment.

One of the first consoles has just been installed at the Coventry Building Society in High street, Coventry.

Charities can apply for money from Change into Action to help support a rough sleeper they are working with. It can fund local charities to pay for clothes, mobile phone top-ups, household items, and contributions to rent and other practical financial support to people who are either rough sleeping or struggling to remain in accommodation.

Dozens of people have benefitted, and it is hoped that the new consoles will make it easier for local people to make a donation.

Emma Brodie, Senior Community Officer at Coventry Building Society, commented: “We’re really proud to be the first venue in the city to install a Change into Action point. People in Coventry have a long history of helping those in need and the donation console in our branch window makes it incredibly straightforward for anyone walking by to give to the city’s homeless, with the reassurance that 100 per cent of every donation goes directly to rough sleepers in our city.

Emma added: “It’s very important for us to support rough sleepers in Coventry, and Change into Action is just one of several pieces of work we’re doing to engage with local support groups and charities to help some of the most vulnerable people in our community. Other donation points will soon start appearing around the city and we want to encourage other businesses in Coventry to get involved if they can.”

Cllr David Welsh, Cabinet Member for Housing and Communities, said: “I’d like to thank Coventry Building Society for its support. The new donation point is a great way for people to provide direct help because all of the money helps people who are street homeless to build a positive life and help aid their recovery.

“Bringing together the existing generosity of the public and the commitment of different agencies like Coventry Building Society is a positive step forward in helping to tackle homelessness.”

Louise Morley, The Arc (Ayriss Recovery Coventry C.I.C), said: “We work closely with the Council and other agencies helping people who struggles to remain in accommodation and this scheme is another important example of the way the public can support us in our work.”

Change into Action gathers donations to support specialist organisations already working with homeless people in Coventry and helps to get people off the streets and back into the community.

Money donated is used to help provide rental deposits for permanent accommodation to new clothing and training for jobs. Agencies apply on behalf of rough sleepers to receive a payment to either purchase goods or services that will either prevent rough sleeping or assist to move somebody into accommodation.

Dozens of people have been helped by the scheme

A web page coordinates public donations, with Feeding Coventry – a local charity, working to distribute the money raised by the public, directly to rough sleepers. www.changeintoaction.org.uk

Change into Action also points the public in the direction of Streetlink; a platform that allows individuals to report the location of people they see rough sleeping or have any worries about them. This way the specialist outreach workers can offer the appropriate support needed. 

To report and refer a rough sleeper for help, please contact Streetlink at streetlink.org.uk or call 0300 500 0914

If you think the person is in immediate danger or needs urgent care, please call 999.

Coventry City Council