Our Social Enterprise of the Week:
Emmaus Leeds are a charity and social enterprise supporting people affected by homelessness. They provide a home, training and work opportunities to formerly homeless people, encouraging them to support themselves and those around them.
Their Vision / Mission:
Emmaus Leeds opened their doors in 2003 but the history of the charity actually dates back to shortly after the Second World War. The first Emmaus community was founded in Paris in 1949 to provide homes for those living on the streets due to the devastation left behind after the War. Nowadays the charity has grown to offer housing and jobs to 26 previously homeless people (Companions), and they continue to evolve and expand rapidly.
Emmaus believe that by giving people a reason to live and adding value to their lives it will enable them to break the cycle of homelessness and live fulfilling lives. Their shop selling second-hand furniture supports the running costs of their housing community and is also the perfect place for their Companions to work in order to support themselves. They also run a café which again offers valuable work to the Companions, giving them opportunities to gain new skills and experience.
Why We Chose Them:
Emmaus are helping homeless people rebuild their lives. They provide long term housing solutions that can be used by their Companions for as long as they want and give them the tools they need to get back on their feet. As well as helping previously homeless people turn their lives around, Emmaus are also helping the environment by diverting household items and furniture from landfill and repurposing them to sell in their shop and online. They also offer their services to the community by providing free furniture collection and free house clearances and then use the furniture they obtain to supply their shop.
The Work They Do:
How They Align With Our Values:
Emmaus share a lot of the same values with us here at Ground Up Digital. They are inclusive to everyone and are giving chances to some of the most marginalised people in society, providing them with the tools to improve their lives. This is similar to our social mission, as we provide work opportunities to people who may have struggled previously to find employment due to neurodiversity or past mistakes. We offer training, support and experience giving people the initial boost they need to get back into work.
You can read more about our values here: https://groundup.digital/our-values/
How You Can Support Them:
Emmaus are always looking for donations of good quality furniture, household goods and appliances. Find out more here: https://emmaus.org.uk/leeds/donate-goods/