Established 2005 Registered Charity No. 1110656

Scottish Charity Register No. SC043760

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Can you stop to make a difference?

October 06 2011
Network Nightspot Birmingham wants to recruit volunteers for its new scheme 


Network Nightspot Birmingham wants to recruit volunteers for the citywide scheme it will launch across the city and in Solihull on 1 November.

NetworkFour, the brains behind Nightspot, aims to empower and enable the community by offering a chance of hope and transformation to those who need it most. They are working in partnership with DePaul UK to establish this service across Birmingham in order to prevent youth homelessness and ensure that all young people have access to safe, secure and appropriate accommodation. They aim to break the downward cycle of homelessness by providing temporary relief for vulnerable people in their time of need.

Gary Wicker, Chief Executive of NetworkFour, explains why the scheme is so important and what it aims to achieve: “We aim to provide a safety net at a moment of great vulnerability. It’s important that we reach out to capture this generation that feels society has turned its back on them to offer them hope, opportunity and transformation”.

Safe emergency overnight accommodation in the homes of trained volunteer host families is available to young people aged 16-25 who are at the brink of being made homeless, and is given on a night-by-night basis until more appropriate and sustainable accommodation solution can be found.

At the point of being made homeless, a young person will be assessed by an approved referral agency for their suitability to stay on a Nightspot scheme. The scheme sets out to give these vulnerable young people “breathing space” in a safe environment where they can work through the options available to them. The following day, the young person will be collected from the host’s home and will see a mediator before going back to the referral agency.

Nightspot is looking for host families to volunteer to provide a safe and welcoming environment for a young person. They will give them a spare room or bed for the night, an evening meal, the opportunity to have a bath or shower and the use laundry facilities, as well as breakfast the following morning. Most importantly, the families must be willing to be a comforting ear if needed, to help the young person with what they are going through.

Network Nightspot Birmingham volunteers are ordinary people who are willing to open the door of their home for a few nights a month to help young people who are in desperate need of support and shelter. About half of the young people referred to Nightspot are under 18 years of age.

The organisation is also looking for volunteer drivers, who are able to transfer night-stoppers from their referral point to their host families. These individuals need to be friendly and approachable at all times as they are in a position of trust and looking after young people who may be very frightened.

Supporters to help with fundraising are also welcomed, as are office staff to help with and the key task of taking referral calls.

If you want to be part of this much-needed project and have a positive impact on the lives of vulnerable young people, contact Gary Wicker by email on or or for more information, visit