A Mayor, a newspaper and an evening in Starbucks…

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All in a day. Since it opened, Worcester’s branch of Starbucks has become my working haven – with it’s ham and cheese croissants and mulled teas! Anyway… *cough* Back to the purpose of this post!
So as it says, all in one day I have managed to have an hour meeting with the Mayor of Worcester, Cllr Roger Knight, about my campaign and what I want to achieve. Mr Knight gave me really sound advice about who to approach in the City in relation to housing and support for homeless people, but also challenged me on my ambitions for the Campaign.

This challenge was welcomed as it really helped me to ground my reasoning. After a cup of coffee, a handshake of the Managing Director of Worcester City Council and talking about the work Cllr Knight does, it turned out to be a successful meeting with the Mayor asking what he and the City Council can do – My response was simple:

Keep the profile of the Campaign up and raise awareness.

Also today, I had a message from a Herefordian who said the following: “HELLO SIR, I WAS OVERWHELMED WITH THE ARTICLE IN THE HEREFORD TIMES. YOU ARE TRULY AMAZING IF I CAN HELP IN ANYWAY DO LET ME KNOW.”

Then I wondered what he was on about, so I went on the Hereford Times website and saw my Article! This article has a picture of the cashpoint I slept in, and it still creates a lump in my throat. But I really encourage people to give it a read and share it on your social media profiles, and also share the article around.

I am really pushing for people to come to Worcester on Saturday to hear my Campaign Talk – Click ‘Going’ on the Facebook event: https://www.facebook.com/events/173506999665899/. If you would like to follow the Campaign on a day to day basis, follow my Twitter account. You can also ask me any questions and I will be answering them in the Q&A sessions I have on Saturday.

Another ripple made in #HugosEarthquake… And there’s plenty more to come!

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Key Supporters: WM Housing

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If you didn’t know, WM Housing is the organisation SHYPP sit under and are key supporters in my Campaign.

Today I met with the Managing Director, Sam Pratley to talk about the Campaign and what I am trying to achieve. Sam was the Head of SHYPP when I was in the service, and someone that I hold the utmost respect for. In relation to the Campaign he has personally offered his support in his role and also the Communication Team resources that WM Housing have to help develop the marketing of #HugosEarthquake. I will be taking this offer up and using it to support the messages I am getting across.

Since the meeting this morning I have dedicated the rest of today into really firming up my Campaign messages and further exploring ways to turn this from being a one-man band to an official body.

I will be working on this and will launch the provisional plans on the 5th December at my live talk in Worcester City Centre.

Please make sure you join the event here: Youth Homelessness Campaign Live | #HugosEarthquake.

I look forward to updating you with more progress as it happens – make sure to follow my Twitter account and the #HugosEarthquake hashtag for all the latest!

Until next time, keep warm!

Spending Review: My thoughts.

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So the UK Chancellor’s Spending Review is being delivered today and I personally estimate that it will not make me smile with joy when it comes to support for homeless people, especially the young.

The last 8 years has been crippling for homeless people – as the recession hit, homelessness rose then to add in the (debatable) reforms to the youth service, welfare and health and social care. Although the Conservatives’ have been getting this Country back to it’s feet, it has been at the cost of many people’s every day livelihoods.

I can see this Spending Review not making allowances for the continuing difficulties that young homeless people face. I’m pleased that Robin Walker mentioned my Campaign in Parliament last week, but more needs to be done to send the above message into the heart of the politician’s who probably haven’t been, nor will be, homeless.

As I have always said, it’s good to get the country back to it’s feet financially and although I slide towards Labour, I do agree with the idea of getting things back to what it was – although no one can take the socialist out of me!

Over the coming days, I will be following up official analysis of the Spending Review and what it means specifically for the homeless population. But until then, it’s time to up our Campaign game and…

“Get homelessness into the heart of MP’s, like it’s in the heart of us”!

CAMPAIGN OFFICIALLY MENTIONED IN PARLIAMENT DEBATE BY ROBIN WALKER, MP

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Today (19th November 2015) my Campaign officially reached the Houses of Parliament. Mentioned in Westminster Hall, House of Commons on a debate about Male Suicide and International Men’s Day.

My MP, Robin Walker, who I met on Wednesday 11th November for 45 minutes and presented my Campaign to said this in the debate:

One issue that we have not touched on much in the debate is homelessness. Men are more likely to be homeless and sleep rough: I think that 87% of rough sleepers are men. A constituent of mine, Hugo Sugg, has talked about how sleeping rough drove him to thoughts of suicide. He now wants to campaign for a better attitude towards youth homelessness and how we encourage people to look at those who are suffering from homelessness, to give them a chance to turn their lives around, working with some of the fantastic charities in this space. Will the Minister join me in paying tribute to the charities and organisations that campaign on homelessness for the job they do in saving men from suicide?

Rt Hon Alistair Burt, MP for North East Bedfordshire replied:

…Housing and homelessness are closely connected with the problem we are discussing, and I commend the constituent that my hon. Friend the Member for Worcester mentioned…

(Read the whole debate at the following link: Hansard, UK Parliament.)

This is an amazing achievement and one I never expected, especially this quickly. I will be getting the official video footage from the Parliament website too.

In response, I will be writing to Mr Walker personally to thank him for mentioning my Campaign in the establishment where Policy, Debates and Law is created.

This acknowledgment gives me the ability to say that I have been officially in Parliament and could lead for more and wider media coverage about my story and the messages behind it.

I would like to commend Mr Walker for mentioning my Campaign when he didn’t have to, and everyone to date who has supported and followed my Campaign.

Because of the momentum this Campaign has created, I am exploring the option to make it official and registered with Companies House in some aspect. A Community Interest Company is a possible option, so is a Foundation or Charity – I would like to turn this Campaign from being a one-man-band into a working organisation which can really make a difference not only in one place, but many!

 

Join the ever-growing Movement via Twitter: #HugosEarthquake

ANSWER THE POLL: Government and Youth Homelessness…

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5/12/15: Live talk in Worcester.

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On 5th December 2015, you are invited to hear me talk about my youth homelessness experience, where I am now, what I want to happen and what is happening in the world of homelessness.

At 2pm and 4pm, I will be doing the same talk outside the Guildhall in Worcester for one hour. I will then be in Costa Coffee opposite at 3pm and 5pm where you can ask me questions.

Guildhall 5th Dec poster

Please share the poster around and get as many people to the event as possible.

I look forward to seeing you. Please comment or Tweet me any questions you would like in advance.

See you then!

Hugo