Photo:The London Evening Standard
An estimated 7500 people attended East London Mosque on Friday to donate 10 tonnes of food to help homeless people this Christmas, The London Evening Standard reported.
After attending Friday prayers, volunteers gathered the supplies, which include rice, pasta, cereal, tinned goods and other items. Donations came from local businesses, colleges, schools and universities. The donations will now be given to local people in need, including those who are living on the streets. More than 90 per cent of the food will be given to people who are not of the Muslim faith.
Homelessness in the UK is increasing, amid rising rents and local authority cuts which are reducing the number of hostel and council housing places available.
The number of people living on the streets in England grew at an “unprecedented” rate between 2015 and 2016, following a spike of around 30 per cent.
On any given night, approximately 3,500 people sleep on streets in England. Experts have also warned of ‘hidden homelessness’ which can occur as people do not fit traditional stereotypes of rough sleepers but are homeless nonetheless, for instance those living in unstable or temporary accommodation, according to The Independent. EOM
Latest figures show that 68,560 households in UK were living in temporary accommodation including B&Bs and hostels between July and September last year – the highest since the start of the economic downturn in 2008.