With the beginning of winter, the days are getting shorter and nights become much colder. For the estimated 10.000 homeless people in Berlin, the daily hardship of living on the streets turns into a tough fight for survival. Since there are not enough shelters for the homeless, we feel obliged to provide more of our lodges for the winter shelter programme “Kältehilfe”.
The number of homeless people in Germany’s capital is rising constantly, due to increasing rents, housing shortage and migration – homeless people from Eastern Europe in particular, spend the winters on the streets of Berlin. There are noticeably more violent attacks on homeless people and also more fights among each other over getting a safe place to sleep.
Illegal camps, like the one in Tiergarten, are being cleared by the police. Homelessness is broadly covered by the media. But still, the number of shelters is very limited and therefore, private initiatives are urgently needed.
Expanding the winter shelter Berlin project
In winter 2016/17, we started to collaborate with the parish of St. Antonius in Friedrichshain and provided some of our Lodges as an addition to their already existing sleeping facilities (5-bedded rooms located in the parsonage). This winter we will expand the winter shelter project by providing eight lodges instead of four. The project is also supported by the Caritas foundation.
— rbb Abendschau (@rbbabendschau) 4. Januar 2017
A sense of home
The 5-bedded rooms in the parsonage next to the church offer a place to sleep for 20 people. Further, the parish provides meals and individual care. Deacon Wolfgang Willisch, one of the pioneers and founder of the winter shelter programme “Kältehilfe” in Berlin, decides who gets to move into the lodges. Requirements for one night in a lodge are a certain mental stability and the ability to handle the responsibility of keeping a room clean. “A sense of home, the privacy of one’s own room and a daily structure can be the first steps for a person to get off the streets”, says Deacon Willisch, who informs the homeless about the lodges and explains to them who gets to sleep in one and why.
During the day, the residents are allowed to leave their personal belongings in the lodges. At 6 pm they can move in for the night and have to return the key by 8 am the next morning.
A warm meal, care and counselling – Deacon Willisch gives the homeless more than just a roof over their heads.
Emergency shelter for men: St. Pius/St. Nikolaus, Palisadenstr. 72, Berlin-Friedrichshain
opening hours 6pm – 8am (last admissions before 9:30pm)
How can I support the “Kältehilfe” project?
Currently, the winter shelter project is supported by the Caritas foundation, the parish of St. Pius and My Molo. The expanses, resulting from transport of the six lodges, their set-up, and the maintenance and provision of care and meals over course of 5 months, build up to an amount of approximately 6.600 EUR.
The money that the Caritas foundation and the parish invest in the winter shelter project usually creates a shortage in the financial support for other charitable projects. In order to provide additional financial relief to such charity organizations, we feel obliged to collect donations this year: Your donation, even small amounts, will secure meals and individual counselling for the homeless people in the shelter of St. Pius and which gives them a sense of home, privacy and dignity.
We have found our first partner in the Lions Club Berlin-Sanssouci, who supported our project through a donation of 2.500 EUR. The money donated benefits the parish of St. Pius and will be solely invested in the winter shelter project. Each donator will be announced by name on our website and donating companies will receive a donation receipt.
Das Projekt teilen oder auf eurer Website einbinden
You can support the winter shelter projekt with a few clicks: Donate some Euros or share the fundraising project with your network or embed it on your website. It’s very simple.
Fundraising link: betterplace.org/p57852
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Nationwide “Kältehilfe” project to be launched
This year’s winter shelter project is very dear to us and we wish to support and expand it beyond the city borders of Berlin. In winter 2018/19 we want to initiate similar projects in other German cities besides Berlin. Thus, we are looking for suitable partners, who have the necessary infrastructure (electricity, shower facilities and toilets) and who also are able to provide enough space and individual care. In case you know anybody who might be a suitable partner or if you already own premises that meet the requirements mentioned above, please do not hesitate to contact us! We can be reached via email email@example.com or via phone 030/521 047 61.