Night shelters

Night shelters are places to stay for people who would be on the streets. You usually have to share the sleeping space with others.

Most night shelters are free. Many have an evening meal or breakfast at no cost or for a small charge.

You arrive by a set time in the evening and leave in the morning. 

Night shelter staff or volunteers can sometimes help with advice on finding somewhere to live and other practical support.

Night shelters and coronavirus

Tell people who work at your night shelter if:

  • you are still vulnerable to the virus

  • need support to socially distance or self isolate

How to get into a night shelter

Contact your council if you're homeless with nowhere to stay.

Ask about emergency options. Tell them if you are on the streets or sleeping rough.

The council might have special arrangements in place, for example if the weather is very cold.

Contact Streetlink if the council does not help or you cannot get in touch with them.

Health questions

The council or outreach team will ask you some health questions.

Check who is at higher risk from coronavirus on the NHS website. 

You may be in priority need if a health condition puts you at higher risk from coronavirus.

This means the council may have to help you with longer term housing.

Help if you do not meet immigration conditions

You may be able to stay in a night shelter if you have no recourse to public funds'. 

The No Accommodation Network has a list of charities who provide night shelters.

Last updated: 25 February 2022

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