Martyna’s Story

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Martyna volunteers with one of CUF’s partner organisations, The Archer Project – a homelessness support project run out of Sheffield Cathedral. Martyna explains that the past two years have been challenging for people experiencing homelessness and the volunteers trying to support them.

"Councils started prioritising rough sleepers, but there were so many in temporary accommodation who have complex needs and were at risk of losing their accommodation. Those people still need support and have big needs."

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"For many of them, English isn't their first language, so they struggle to communicate, to access health services, apply for employment and housing. But they can speak to me and access emotional support."

"So many feel that there is a barrier now where there wasn't before. They have started feeling like strangers in the community, even though they have lived here for 10-15 years. They have this feeling of being 'in-between' and belonging nowhere."

That’s why the Church Urban Fund is partnering with local organisations, like The Archer Project. Through Positive Pathways, we partner with organisations like the Archer Project and share our vision for everyone to access a community of support. Nearly five years on, the impact of our work together is clear. For example, 88% of clients say they have someone they could count on to help in a crisis. Volunteers tell us that they have grown more robust and connected to their local area. And many people who have recovered from homelessness have now returned to volunteer themselves.

Martyna knows all too well how essential this work is – and will continue to be in the coming months.

It’s crucial and it’s lifesaving. Think about how many people are dying on the streets due to homelessness. These projects do save lives.

And for us too, the volunteers. It’s nice to get involved with people who share similar values and care about similar things. It helped my loneliness and supported my sense of belonging. It was a way to contribute my skills to the community.”

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I hope that, if you find yourself in the position to do so, you will support us with a kind donation today.

It could help make sure that more people can access they support they need to thrive.