An Emmaus Community is a unique charity that enables people to move on from homelessness, providing work and a home in a supportive, family environment. Companions, as residents are known, work full time in the communities recycling business, collecting renovating and reselling donated furniture and other items. This work supports the Community financially and enables companions to develop skills and rebuild their self-respect.
Companions can live in the community for as long as it takes for them to rebuild their lives and return to everyday living. Emmaus communities are dry and drug free. Companions agree to sign of mainstream benefits whilst living in the community. A critical part of the Emmaus ethos is that all members of its community should participate in the communities recycling business, thus taking responsibility for themselves and playing their part in ensuring the Community is financially self-sustaining and not dependant on handouts from others – we receive no funding from central or local government.
Research shows that for every £1 spent with Emmaus, there was an £11 social, economic and environmental return on investment, with savings to the benefits bill, healthcare, a reduction in crime reoffending and a reduction in the amount of waste going to landfill.
Providing only a roof for someone that is homeless can often be no more than a sticking plaster. Emmaus communities deal with the whole person; addressing addictions, family issues, problems with money, confidence, low esteem and skills.