Practical help if you're homeless and on the streets

Get help to find a place to stay if you're on the streets.

This page tells you about other practical support and legal rights if you're on the streets or have no fixed address.

Homeless day centres

Most homeless day centres offer somewhere warm for a hot drink or a chat.

They are usually run by charities and may have paid staff and volunteers.

Practical support could include:

  • internet access

  • free or cheap food

  • showers and laundry

  • safe storage for your bags

  • somewhere to charge your phone

  • clean clothes, toiletries or sleeping bags

Other services

Some homeless day centres have a range of other services, for example:

  • benefits or immigration advice

  • support with your health or finding work

  • educational, therapeutic or social activities

  • hostel, night shelter or outreach team referrals

Find a homeless day centre near you

Search for a day centre on the Homeless Link website

How to register with a doctor (GP)

You need to register with a GP surgery so you can see a doctor when you are sick.

It helps if you have at least 1 of the following:

  • passport

  • birth certificate

  • HC2 certificate

  • CHAIN number (if you're sleeping rough)

  • letter from a hostel or homeless day centre

You cannot be refused registration just because you don't have proof of address or ID, or because of your immigration status.

You can be refused if the surgery or medical centre is full and not taking on new patients.

Ask the receptionist to write down the reasons if you are told you cannot register with a GP. You may be able to complain.

This NHS leaflet explains your rights to register with a GP.

Specialist medical centres

Some surgeries and medical centres offer specialist services for homeless people, including people with mental health, alcohol or drug problems.

Ask day centres and hostels about specialist medical centres in the area.

COVID-19 vaccine

Groundswell have useful information on how to get your vaccine or booster.

Information is also available in Polish, Romanian, Turkish, Amharic, Arabic and Tigrinya.

How to register to vote

You must register before you can vote in an election.

Voter registration is sometimes called 'being on the electoral register'.

British citizens, EU citizens and some Commonwealth citizens can register to vote.

You must be at least:

  • 16 to register

  • 18 to vote

Find out more about which elections you can vote in on GOV.UK

No fixed address?

You need an address for voter registration, but you don't have to live there.

Fill in an Electoral registration form for someone with no fixed or permanent address.

Box 8 on the form asks for an address or place where you spend a large part of your time. For example, a:

  • hostel or day centre

  • friend or relative's house

Return the form to the electoral registration office at the council.

Find contact details for your local electoral registration office on GOV.UK


Last updated: 10 January 2022

If you need to talk to someone, we'll do our best to help

Get help