Portsmouth charity's new £85K project will address soaring rates of homeless female abuse survivors

Trevor Pickup, chief executive of The Society of St James.
Trevor Pickup, chief executive of The Society of St James.
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A PORTSMOUTH homelessness charity will launch a new project to support vulnerable women after securing an £85,000 award.

The Society of St James was given the money as part of Homeless Link’s Ending Women’s Homelessness grants programme, which benefits from the government's Tampon Tax Fund.

It comes as the charity sees a ‘significant increase’ in the number of women presenting as homeless, with many being victims of trauma.

This includes both current and historic cases of domestic and sexual abuse, Society of St James chiefs say. 

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It is hoped this will result in positive outcomes for women at risk of disadvantage, with the charity’s capacity to help them set to rise. 

Trevor Pickup, chief executive of the Society of St James, said: 'We are delighted to have been awarded this grant by Homeless Link.

‘We have seen a sharp increase in the numbers of women coming into our services, including our substance misuse, homelessness and housing services, many of whom have complex backgrounds and need high levels of support.  

‘This funding will enable us to be better trained but also to be better prepared to support their needs in a gender and trauma informed way.’ 

The charity was one of 29 across England granted the amount, of almost 200 causes that applied for a share of a £1.85m pot. 

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It will partner with Portsmouth charity Aurora New Dawn and other local groups and organisations to run the project, named Horizons. 

Tasmin Maitland, Homeless Link's assistant director of practice and partnerships, said: ‘Women’s homelessness is a growing crisis.

‘Despite this, women who are homeless or at risk of homelessness are one of the most marginalised groups in our society and the specialist support they need is often lacking or non-existent.

‘We are delighted to be able to award The Society of St James a grant that will have a real impact on the support that women experiencing homelessness in Hampshire receive, and ultimately contribute to ending women’s homelessness for good.'