Welsh News: Magic bus for the homeless of Newport

Sleeping space for twelve: Built after a year of fundraising. CREDIT: Ian Smith

A CONVERTED double-decker bus will soon arrive on the streets of Newport to offer the homeless a temporary place to sleep.

The bus has been kitted out to allow sleeping space for 12 people, two showers, two toilets, a kitchen and a lounge area.

It was built by volunteers from the Helping Open People’s Eyes (HOPE) group using funds collected over more than a year of relentless fundraising.

The HOPE bus is now close to completion and volunteers are confident it will be on the road as a mobile shelter for street sleepers within the next few weeks.

The idea for the shelter came to self-employed bus driver Ian Smith and his wife Tammy from Cefn Fforest, Blackwood after they visited a similar project in Bristol last year.

“I first saw Jasper Thompson and his ‘Bristol Home for the Night’ campaign. He had a bus there which was converted. I saw his project and I thought what a wonderful thing so I thought we should start fundraising for it.”

He began raising money for his project in October last year and as his organisation is not a registered charity the majority of funds were raised through raffles and donations.

 

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