We started as Maidstone Christian Care in 1986 with the objective of supporting homeless and vulnerable people. The charity opened the first Maidstone Day Centre in 1995 in a ground floor flat at Lenworth House and in 2004 moved to 15 Knightrider Street. Knightrider Street was a massive move requiring massive effort, none of it could have been achieved without the support of local churches. Today that strength and determination is even more important as Homeless Care makes the moves for the future it sees, serving the community and helping when things don't go right for so many people. Help, food and shelter are essential for survival for many.
Maidstone Christian Care has come a long way since Patricia McCabe and pupils of Maidstone Girls' Grammar School first started a soup run serving sandwiches and hot drinks from the boot of Pat's car. That was in 1986 when the Maidstone Round Table gave the group a grant of £500 to start a project for homeless people.
Over the next few years, alongside the soup runs, local churches offered the use of their premises so that on some days volunteers from MCC could provide hot meals for people in need. The United Reformed Church in Week Street was supportive from the beginning over the years before we had our own premises.
Maidstone Christian Care had been registered as a charity (1048081) in 1989 and in 1995 became registered as a company limited by guarantee. A few months later the first Day Centre opened in a ground floor flat in Lenworth House and we were able expand our service to homeless and vulnerable men and women.
We are now board of 9 trustees, all volunteers, who are responsible for the decisions that keep the funds coming in and the wheels of the organisation turning.
We have a team of staff members, based at 15 Knightrider Street and a team of brilliant volunteers.
Every member of the team works together to run our projects, helping our adult clients to turn their lives around.
Based at Knightrider St, we offer:
1. emergency respite from the street – a shower, hot meal, and laundry available while our team connect rough sleepers to the appropriate support services
2. create individual support plans – to put bespoke action plans in place to help people transition away from rough sleeping or temporary accommodation
3. essential services - we offer our clients the opportunity to see a nurse, hair dresser, osteopath, mental health specialist and other qualified professionals to help stay healthy and improve their quality of life