At Emmaus we're working together to end homelessness
Emmaus (pronounced em-MAY-us) is a homelessness charity with a difference. We don’t just give people a bed for the night; we offer a home, meaningful work and a sense of belonging.
Emmaus Dover is one of more than 350 Emmaus communities throughout the world. Emmaus provides a home, work and a future for men and women who have experienced homelessness.
We have been in Archcliffe Fort since 1995. The buildings were in various states of dilapidation then so we were only partly operational in the early years. After spending around £500,000, we have been fully operational on the site since July 1998. Having identified maintenance needs for our historic buildings, we are currently in phase two of our “Building a Better Future” project, to renovate and improve our facilities.
How we operate:
Emmaus Dover has its own business. We collect, repair, renovate and resell donated goods of all sorts, with particular emphasis on furniture and electrical white goods.
Some new goods are made in the community workshop, using recycled materials wherever possible. We also do some gardening work. The aim is that the community will be financially self-sustaining. We currently provide accommodation and support for 27 formerly homeless people at our site at Archcliffe Fort.
In 1994 Francis Watts was helping his wife, Anne, at the soup kitchen in Dover.
A conversation developed between Francis and a gentleman about what he thought was needed in Dover. The reply came, ‘We all have our hideaways, but we are bored to tears during the day’. The idea of creating an Emmaus community in Dover was born.