SMART launches its annual Winter Appeal and aims to raise £60,000

John, Tim (SMART First point), Ryan, Jim (SMART Volunteer), Heather (SMART Chef), Cassie (Prebend Centre Manager), Sarah (SMART Fundraising Manager, Karl (SMART First Point). Image: SMART CJS

A Bedford-based homelessness charity has launched its annual Winter Appeal today (Tuesday) and says that the need for its services is dramatically rising.

SMART CJS aims to raise £60,000 to fund their much relied-upon Prebend Street Support Hub, particularly as winter approaches.

As well as dedicated Case Workers and Support Staff on site, SMART provides hot meals, clean clothing and bedding, hot showers, shelter, GP registration and nurse appointments, English lessons, Path to Recovery sessions, toiletries and much more.

It is supported by a small team of highly dedicated daily volunteers to help in the kitchen or in reception to help keep the Hub running efficiently.

It costs £234,000 a year to provide this service, and the team works hard to fundraise the money they need to keep everything running smoothly.

Cassie Burrows, Prebend Support Hub Manager, said: “We rely heavily on the support from our local community. Without your help, we
wouldn’t be able to keep opening our doors and offer much-needed provision to people coping with homelessness.

“Please donate if you can. Thank you so much.”

Jen Robus, CEO of SMART, said that the charity is seeing more and more people asking for their help, worried that they are facing homelessness or are already sleeping rough.

“As a long-standing part of the Bedford community, the Prebend Support Hub is often the first place people think of to get help and advice.

“Sadly, like with many other charities, we are feeling the strain of rising costs to keep the Hub running and to meet increasing demand.”

How you can help

You can help by donating to the appeal, here.

The charity is encouraging organisations including religious groups, sports teams, schools or workplaces to get involved.

The charity’s Fundraising Manager Sarah Grimes will be happy to help you organise a collection or fundraising activity. If you’d like to donate clothing, food, sleeping bags etc, please head to the charity’s website to see what they are most in need of. The email address for all queries related to the appeal is

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