Birmingham Christmas Shelter


Shelter Week 2021

We are really pleased to announce that we will be running Shelter Week this year.

For 2021, we are asking only volunteers who have had double Covid-19 vaccinations to register and to take a Lateral Flow Test on each of the days they come to volunteer during Shelter Week is year.  

Existing Registered Volunteers with an Account on My Impact

You can book an induction from Monday 25th October 2021. To log into your account on My Impact and book your induction using a web browser, Please Click this Link..  Alternatively, you can download the My Impact app from your app store to login and book your induction on a mobile device.  Further instructions on how to book your induction are available on the home page of My Impact once you have logged in.

New Volunteer Applications
New Volunteer Applications will open on Monday 1st November 2021.

Volunteer Inductions

This year there is a choice of attending either an in-person induction as usual at St Georges, or an on-line induction via zoom as follows

  • In-person Inductions at St Georges Hub, Great Hampton Row, Newtown, Birmingham, B19 3JG.
    • Saturday 27th November 2021       09:30  to 12:00
    • Saturday 4th December 2021         09:30  to 12:00
  • On-line Inductions Via Zoom
    • Sunday 28th November                   10:00 to 12:00
    • Thursday 2nd December 2021        19:00 to 21:00
    • Sunday 5th December 2021            10:00 to 12:00

When attending either of the In-person Inductions at St Georges, you will be required to present evidence of a Covid-19 Lateral Flow Test taken the same day in the form of the test strip, a photograph of the test strip or NHS confirmation on your phone. 

You are also advised that access to St Georges now falls within the Birmingham Clean Air Zone, so you may be required to pay the clean air zone charge of £8.00 each day you attend St Georges if you drive to St Georges and your vehicle is non complaint.  (For further information see Birmingham Clean Air Zone.)  We are currently looking at  possible options during Shelter Week for those Volunteers who are affected, being able to park up at a predefined location outside of the zone and transport provided into St GeorgesTo avoid paying the Clean Air Zone Charge when attending one of the in-person Inductions at St Georges, there is street parking outside the Clean Air Zone, only a short walk to St George's, in Bridge Street West and surrounding roads on the other side of the A4540 dual carriageway.  Parking would be at your own risk.

For any further information or technical assistance, please contact dbsupport@birminghamchristmasshelter.org

 

 

 

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Areas for Volunteering

General

The "general" area needs volunteers who do not mind where they are placed. Due to the quick pace of the shelter week, we need general volunteers to be flexible and willing to support areas that require help. Jobs may vary from greeting guests when they arrive, serving food in the dining room, chaperoning people in services such as showers and the cinema room,  ensuring everyone receives (and wears) a name badge and generally making sure things go to plan

Kitchen

Our kitchen area is managed by the Lead Chef.  A team of professional chefs, giving their time and skills for free, ensure that the three full meals a day are served. Due to limited space, only a small number of volunteers are able to assist in the kitchen area. As a volunteer in the kitchen, tasks include cleaning, preparing food and washing up.

 

 

Main Hall

The Main Hall is the heart of the shelter, both the entertainments and tea-hatch are situated in the main hall. Being a volunteer in the main hall could involve socialising with the guests, sweeping up, clearing away plates or feeding the dogs. The Main Hall is also the place where men sleep, so late night volunteers will help with the setup of their sleeping area and early morning volunteers help to clear it away and get the out the tables and chairs. Pretty much anything goes!

Tea Hatch / Snacks

The tea hatch/snack area is the busiest area of the main hall. Both guests and volunteers enjoy a lovely cuppa throughout the day and working in this area is never quiet as you will be speaking directly to guests and volunteers.

 

Donations Room

The Donations Room is where donations of food, toiletries, cleaning materials etc are catalogued, sorted and stored ready for use during Shelter Week. Volunteers working in this area will keep track of any donations used, wrap gifts that are given to guests on Christmas Day, identify suitable items for bingo prizes and make up the goody bags of food, clothes and toiletries to give to guests on the last day. It is generally only open from 09:00 to 17:00.

Setup and Close Down

As no guests are present on the days when we setup and close down our Shelter, volunteers do not need induction training and we can welcome under 16's to help.  The day starts at 10:00 and we aim to be finished within 5 hours. The main exception to this is our new volunteer team working through the night on the last day to pack the crates and keep an inventory of leftover items, ready to go into storage. Tasks include moving furniture, cleaning floors, mattresses, toilet, shower, kitchen and dining areas, unloading/re-loading the delivery van, putting up Christmas decorations and signs and setting up areas ready for use. 

 

Our Aim

Our aim is to offer food, warmth, shelter and companionship to homeless and lonely people in the Birmingham area, over the Christmas period.

Our doors are open to all, irrespective of gender, colour, race, religion or sexual orientation.