Support bus for Crawley’s homeless seeks a home

Men in Sheds and Danny Gallivan trust work on a  bus - intended to be a homeless shelter in Crawley. Pic Steve Robards SR1820797 SUS-181208-154735001
Men in Sheds and Danny Gallivan trust work on a bus - intended to be a homeless shelter in Crawley. Pic Steve Robards SR1820797 SUS-181208-154735001

A bus, refitted as a night shelter for homeless people, is itself in need of a permanent home in Crawley.

Steve Swain, chairman of The Danny Gallivan Trust, which owns the double decker, told the Crawley Observer that they are looking for a site where the bus can stay overnight, with access to electricity.

He said: “We bought this bus about 18 months ago.

“There was a lot that needed doing, but it’s getting towards being ready.”

Steve said the support of Crawley Men in Sheds had been hugely important, providing them with knowledgeable tradesmen to get the bus fitted out.

Known as ‘Danny’, the bus is intended to act as a safe haven, kitchen, social club, and dormitory, with separate areas for men and women.

“If we’ve got a permanent home then lots of homeless people might be able to use the bus as an address, when applying for jobs, or for benefits,” said Steve.

The Danny Gallivan Trust began as a small military charity, founded in 2013 by Kerry Gallivan.

Kerry’s father Danny had served in the Irish Guards and the Guards Independent Parachute Company, serving in Aden, Libya and Malaya.

After leaving the Army, he worked as a welder, and was involved in creating one of the first ‘wheelbarrow’ remotely controlled robots for bomb disposal work.

Danny passed away in 2012. The charity was set up to support any veterans who had fallen on hard times.

A statement from the trust said: “The purpose of the charity is to provide homeless veterans of all generations with hot food and drinks, sleeping bags, warm clothing, footwear, washing and shaving kits.

“Our welfare team give assistance in helping these heroes find accommodation, work and introduce them to other agencies that can help these brave men and women get their lives back on track.

“Whilst we have strong ties with former service personnel it became clear to us that homelessness is a far bigger problem for the wider community not just veterans.

“Therefore, we are now doing what we can to help anyone who is homeless in Sussex, by supplying hot food and drinks, warm clothing, wash kits, shaving kits and friendship.”

Anyone who can help can contact the trust on 07932 774255.

For more information, visit: www.dgtrust.org.uk

See also: Crawley families invited to apply for BBC TV’s Shop Well For Less