Last year there were tens of thousands of visits to places in Manchester which had been set up as non-judgemental safe spaces where people could get out of the cold, according to Manchester City Council. This year, 22 Manchester libraries will once again operate as ‘Warm Welcome Spaces’, providing a range of support to people who need it, including homeless people and those who will once again struggle with the cost of living this winter.
The Manchester Warm Welcome Spaces will offer free hot drinks, free Wi-Fi, free data SIM cards, newspapers, information and advice and extra signposting to support services in the city, so those worse off can effectively help themselves. The council highlights: “it is important to say that these spaces are free to enter, and can be stayed in for as long as you like.”
As well as the City Council’s 22 libraries, there are dozens of other community and volunteer run spaces that will be taking part in the support offer this year. Councillor Joanna Midgley, Deputy Leader of Manchester City Council said: “Through our Warm Welcoming Spaces offer we are extending a helping hand to people who may be struggling this winter.
“Through this scheme we want to help tackle poverty and isolation and show, that help is always available to people in Manchester who may be finding things difficult. In Manchester no one should be cold this winter and I am proud that once again our communities are pulling together to support our vulnerable residents.”
You can access an interactive map and a list of the public places offering the Warm Welcoming Spaces here – Manchester locations include Manchester Central Library, Miles Platting Community Library and Brunswick Parish Church.
The council continues to respond to residents who have been worst affected by the Cost of Living on a day-to-day basis. Any Manchester resident needing support can ring 0800 0800 023 2692. The line is open Monday to Friday 9am to 4:30pm.
People can also visit the Helping Hands page to obtain access to support for a range of issues.