Real life success stories from the Nottingham Night Shelter

We think it’s important to keep our supporters up to date with news from the shelter. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Nottingham Night Shelter moved into a hotel on 27th March 2020 in response to the Government’s ‘Everybody In’ initiative.

As of Tuesday 15th September, the shelter has enabled 4,255 nights’ protection for a total of 164 guests and rough sleepers, providing them with shelter, food, support and en-suite facilities.

As a result of the quality of care from all involved, 89 people have moved on from the hotel. They are now in privately rented, hostel, temporary or supported accommodation and some have re-connected with friends and family. The Nottingham Night Shelter has been working in conjunction with local councils and agencies and has received referrals from a variety of sources.

We’re delighted to be able to share two positive stories, both of which have taken place during the pandemic. These personal stories are a true testament to our support staff, who have been working day and night to protect and support some of Nottingham’s most vulnerable people. Names and information have been altered to protect identities.

Katie’s story – “If I hadn’t been able to go into the hotel I would have been street homeless during the pandemic”

“I am a 30-year-old female and I was living at the hotel at the Nottingham Night Shelter for 65 nights. Before being at the shelter I was street homeless.  I had been in temporary accommodation but that stopped when the Covid-19 lockdown came into place and I was moved to the hotel. 

It was lovely to have my own space and to know that I was safe.  The support from the staff was great and the food was very good.  My room was very nice and I loved having my own toilet and shower. 

The staff were around all the time and when my mobile phone broke, they allowed me to use the shelter phone so that I could keep in touch with other agencies. 

The hardest part was having to stay in all the time and there being nowhere to go if I went outside.

I am now in supported accommodation getting specific support and I am very relieved to be getting the help I need and I am still in contact with support staff from the shelter. 

If I hadn’t been able to go into the hotel I would have been street homeless.”

Joe’s story – “My health would have massively deteriorated if I hadn’t gone into the shelter”

“I am a 61-year-old British male. In April, I was released from custody and spent one night sleeping rough on the streets.  I was then referred to and accepted by the night shelter. After spending 58 nights at the hotel, I’m now living in supported accommodation.

At first, I was very apprehensive as it was a strange situation and I knew I had to isolate for 2 weeks.  I also have poor physical health, which caused me to worry.

When I got to the hotel I was able to relax. The staff were very courteous and my room had its own bathroom with toilet and shower. I had a kettle of my own, with tea and coffee.  The staff were very good and let me have milk when I needed it as I couldn’t keep it in my room for long – it’s these little things that make a massive difference. 

My meals were brought to my room for me and I was able to access the health team daily. The meals were decent but I have problems chewing harder textures and sometimes I struggled. 

Although there was a television in the room and I had access to free Wi-Fi, I still found boredom to be an issue during the 2 weeks as I was not allowed out of the hotel. 

After the isolation period I was able to go out for short periods, but it was recommended that I didn’t have extended contact with others due to my health issues. 

Access to the Homeless Health Team and the Health Bus was fantastic and I was able to have blood tests and get other medical support. As a result, my health stabilized whilst I was at the hotel.  If I had not been able to go into the shelter I know my health would have deteriorated.”


Whilst we are facing uncertainty and additional strain from the current circumstances, our support and advice for homeless, vulnerable and isolated adults continues to help those in need. It is down to our fantastic support staff and the donations from the local community that make it possible.

If you would like more information about Emmanuel House’s services, please get in touch.

If you are a business and would like to support us, please contact rosie.needhamsmith@emmanuelhouse.org.uk.

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