Walking to Leicester Uni for my SCONUL library application I bumped into a coffee making milk float as part of a Christmas market in front of the University library, amongst other stalls and attractions. The float, a former milk delivery vehicle, was donated to the homeless charity ‘The Bridge’. I immediately saw the opportunity as a ‘Community Reporter’ and asked the young man who was staffing the float if I could conduct a short interview with him about what is ‘The Bridge’ and what they are doing.
The most useful helper in spontaneous situations like this is the mobile phone, as highlighted in our last session with John Coster at DMU, because the mobile is always with us wherever we go, always ready for pictures and for interviews, – in the wait for a newsworthy story. In preparation I had just downloaded Hindenburg, a mobile app for the radio and community reporter.
I heard of ‘ The Bridge’ before but did not know any details of what they are doing. Here is the short interview:
This interview was recorded on a mobile device. It picked up the surrounding sounds of the Christmas market and one gets an impression of its busy atmosphere.
The Bridge has a presence on Facebook and Twitter.
RT @TheBridgeLeics: Looking for volunteers in Leics between 29/12 to 31/01 for The Bridge – Homeless Emergency (cont) http://tl.gd/7lg5hh
— Homelessness to Hope (@TheBridgeLeics) December 23, 2010
According to ‘The Bridge’ there are currently over 30 people sleeping rough on the streets of Leicester. Many more are in temporary or unsuitable accommodation.
The charity has been working to help the homeless community for nine years and is serving 6,000 free hot meals a year. They managed to house 10 people in 2016. This shows that housing homeless people is perhaps the most difficult part. It is their stated aim and vision for everyone in Leicester to ‘have a place to call home and hope for the future’.
Here are some of the many stories of ‘The Bridge’ users. Martin has to say the following:
And this is what Jenny has to say:
There are many more stories and testimonials of those who have been helped by ‘The Bridge’. All in all I am really happy I met the coffee serving milk float at Leicester University.