A private social enterprise called Help Bristol’s Homeless, started by an Army veteran &restaurant owner Jasper Thompson, is converting dozens of shipping containers and some double-decker bus to a home for the homeless. Every unit has a common room, a bathroom, and a bedroom. The double-decker bus is set to be converted into a sleeping area for 20 people. This project is spearheaded by homeless people.
“It’s about everyone working together, learning trades and people pulling each other up,” Mr. Thompson told Metro.co.uk.“We’re registering as a social enterprise, we’d love to see this work and roll more places out there. We’ve shown what can be done with a bit of energy and support.”
There are many Bristol businesses who joined the project, such as energy giant EDF, developers like Barratt Homes and Balfour Beatty, as well as a property company named Collier International.
Speaking to Bristol Live, Jasper Thompson said: “Colliers has been fantastic. Without their help, there would be two more people sleeping on the streets. “We are so grateful to all of the businesses involved in this project, which are helping to improve the lives of rough sleepers.”
“Staff in the Bristol office have always rolled up their sleeves and got involved in Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives,” Colliers International spokesperson Tim Davies said.“This ambitious project takes that to a new level as, by helping to transform former shipping containers into temporary homes, Colliers staff will also be helping to transform the lives of homeless people in Bristol.”
Mr. Thompson started Help Bristol’s Homeless after feeling he needed to do more to help people especially the homeless. As per their website: https://helpbristolshomeless.co.uk/ “We believe that having a home is not an entitlement, it is a RIGHT. Everybody should have the opportunity to live in a place they can call their own.”
Mr. Thompson is now urging Bristol City Council to get involved. He asked them that he would love to have a piece of land to where they can base the project permanently. They are hoping to house the rough sleepers for a whole year. Mr. Thompson also hopes that this would help the homeless to begin a new and better life.
The charity’s mission is to change the face of homelessness in Bristol through the support of many people, including their directors, trustees, volunteers, and supporters. They want to provide temporary accommodation until a rough sleeper can find a permanent home.