01:00PM, Friday 30 November 2018
A call for drivers has been issued by a homelessness charity that is looking to take its service onto four wheels.
The Brett Foundation is hoping people capable of driving its new mobile shelter will get in touch.
Howard, the name of a double decker bus brought in by the charity to help rough sleepers, will need drivers to move it once in the morning and once in the evening.
Sue Brett, the charity’s founder, is keen to get the mobile shelter on the road before the winter weather sets in in earnest.
It joins Butterfly, a company set up by the charity to employ homeless people in odd jobs, as the latest of Sue’s ideas to come to fruition this year.
“It is a bit nerve-wracking,” Sue said. “All of a sudden what was in my head is out there and real.”
She added: “If needs be, if we have the drivers… we could open it tomorrow. We are that close.”
The Brett Foundation, which supports homeless people by providing food, useful items and looks to provide a pathway for them to move off the streets, will use Howard to assess how its volunteers can help any rough sleeper who arrives at the bus asking for help.
It can accommodate 12 people and will have beds, a seating area, and a kitchenette where food can be microwaved and hot drinks served.
The bus will be kept in storage during the day but the foundation aims to have it parked wherever it can in the town centre from the evening to early the next morning.
Drivers will be needed at those times. A minimum of 15 hours’ bus driving experience is required.
“It will be just in the town centre,” Sue said.
“We don’t park on any housing estates or accommodation.”
Volunteers will also staff the bus.
The name Howard is derived from the first letters of the words Hope On Wheels Across Royal District, a choice that was drawn randomly after the charity asked the public to submit ideas.
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