We are a nonprofit organisation focused on helping make the world around us a better, happier place. With the help of our tireless staff, So far this past 5 months of operation we have provided over 1400 warm beds and shelter to the homeless. but we're not just a shelter! We have a strong motivation to get the guys engaged back into mainstream society and this is facilitated by our "progression plan" which is done daily with one on one mentoring, we asses the individual needs of our clients and put a "plan" of action together to get them the help needed to structure and rebuild what are sometimes very very broken lives.
Our work doesn't stop there and also includes placing over 30 into the Christian rehab Betel.uk - Seven full time jobs and ten permanently housed! On top of that we organise fundraisers, community-building events, and in-depth training sessions for our volunteers.
How we started
We are into our third year of being an Outreach Ministry which first consisted of working on the streets ministering through giving out food and blankets to the homeless, and visiting prisons spreading the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ, being a small group of volunteers not doing much other than this ministry work we ticked over until the winter months of 2016 came! This is when seeing news articles about the homeless dying of the cold freezing to death! we immediately knew we had to do a lot more than give food and blankets out!
The campaign to get funds to buy and convert a double Decker bus into a shelter started, with some posts on Facebook and letters and calls to organisations, we soon realised raising the funds would be a lot harder then we originally thought, so Michael our CEO and founder contacted a business associate and the bus was bought and paid for within a few days of that meeting!
After acquiring the bus December 2016 which was donated by Select Car Leasing and trying our best to convert it into a homeless shelter with no funds, we struggled to finance the conversion and it stalled, It was then we found the need to become a registered charity and that is when we became "The Ark Project" official name "Community Action Ark Project" Reg: 1172988 this was registered May 2017. Once we had charity status we found it easier to raise much needed funds to finish the build of the 10 Sleeper homeless Bus "Lenny" all glory to God it was finally completed and launched October 2017. After 14 months of talks with the local councils trying to get a place for "Lenny" to stay semi permanent all efforts failed and as of yet we still have no place to call home and the homeless bus travels round Berkshire stopping where ever we can find a safe space, its been fine and we have been made welcome wherever we stop, The only issues we had are the lack of shower and toilets facilities, however we have that covered too! and our mobile shower and toilet unit is currently being finished and we hope to run a shower service for the homeless throughout Berkshire anytime soon.
Being a small charity with no guaranteed income We run day to day and hand to mouth, not surprisingly though we have never gone without food, fuel, and clean clothes during the five months running the bus.
Please continue to support us so we can make a real difference in peoples lives.
We are the only homeless shelter in Reading & Newbury that provides a warm bed and safe environment to anyone whether they have local connections or not, We are the only shelter that does nightly rounds and take the homeless we find there and then to our shelter, unfortunately other homeless charities require the local authorities "stamp" before they will allow anyone in for the night. The only exceptions are when SWEP kicks in due to the temperatures dropping below -1 for three consecutive days, we believe all shelters should run this way and regardless of the temperature.
Read more on how charities run regarding the cold weather emergency protocol.
We run independently of the government which allows us to other help where others larger charities can't due to restrictions put on them by the local councils that fund them, unfortunately this can mean a lot of homeless are left on the streets due to red tape!
This is why we are independent of government funding, How you can support us? Whether you help through monetary donations, volunteering your time, or spreading our mission through word-of-mouth, We couldn't accomplish our goals without the help of supporters like you,
To donate please click here