Praxis Community Projects

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Shelter and Safety

Some homeless people cannot access provision designed to be a safety net. Praxis is engaged in creating alternative temporary homes for very vulnerable migrants with “no recourse to public funds”.

Providing Safety and Shelter

A woman in her 50’s from Zimbabwe was recently referred to Praxis. She had been staying at a man’s house who she met through her church, who offered her accommodation whilst her asylum claim was being resolved. Unfortunately she soon found herself in a precarious situation. The man repeatedly abused her sexually, but due to a long history of abuse back in Zimbabwe and with nowhere else to go, she accepted her predicament. She discovered the man slept with an axe and a hammer next to his bed. He threatened her should she reject his demands or tell anyone. She stayed with what she called ‘that monster’ for one month in total.

Praxis’ Advice Team found limited options available as she didn’t fit the criteria for refuge, and other projects required contact with the Police, which she was not prepared to do at that point. Having no recourse to public funds due to her immigration status was another stumbling block to access mainstream women shelters. The few shelters which didn’t require access to benefits were all full.

A member of Praxis’ hosting scheme concerned about her safety kindly took her in until proper accommodation was found, which gave the team time to untangle the woman’s immigration status and apply for support. After 5 weeks of legal dealings, a court of Appeal ruled in her favour compelling the UKBA to support her with accommodation and financial support.

 

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