Crisis Newcastle Expecting Busy Christmas

23 December 2013, 06:00 | Updated: 30 March 2016, 13:50

Crisis in Newcastle are preparing themselves for a busy Christmas - with more than 1,000 people expected through the doors.

Last year, 1,238 people took part in classes, courses, activities and support offered by Crisis Skylight in Newcastle, with 593 qualifications awarded and 50 people helped back into work.

The number of people coming through the doors has been steadily growing since the centre opened in 2007.

In total, 1,736 households were accepted as homeless by their council across the North East in 2012/13.

1,012 households in Tyne & Wear were accepted as homeless by their local council, which is a 9% rise on last year.

In Newcastle itself, there was an 8% rise in homelessness acceptances since 2011/12. 

Julie Grimes who's the Director of Crisis Skylight Newcastle.

She's told Capital what the organisation is doing over Christmas:
"Christmas becomes a very lonely time for some of our clients who use our services all year round.

They may have fallen out with family, they're very isolated and very vulnerable.

And there aren't many services open over the Christmas period.

We try to provide a link for people and to have activities that provide the kinds of things that everybody else does on Christmas day.

We have chiropodists and hairdressers who come into the centre, we show films, and we have a very jovial but calming atmosphere."

Crisis Newcastle have recruited about 250 volunteers this year who will engage with around 300 people over Christmas Day and boxing Day between 8am and 8pm.

One of those volunteers is Ian Phillips, who's told Capital what he hopes people will get form the service over Christmas:
"It's just that homely feeling. I just want people to feel that there's someone there for them.

They're not alone and also other people are here in the same situation that they can talk to."

You can find out more about Crisis Newcastle HERE