We are a Cardiff-based charity tackling homelessness and seeking to overcome the problems and barriers that force individuals to sleep rough on our streets.
Our services focus around our day centre open 365 days of the year, a 20 bed hostel with additional emergency spaces, 14 shared houses with tenant support that accommodate 53 clients. In extreme weather conditions we also open our day centre at night as an additional (EOS) emergency overnight stay unit, to provide shelter for people who would otherwise be forced to sleep rough. We have accomodated 40+ homeless and vulnerable people a night in the winter months.
This is all underpinned by personal and tenant support, development, advocacy, training and many volunteering and work-focussed opportunities.
Huggard’s, all inclusive policy will continue to be the gateway to a wealth of opportunities for all those who find themselves needing shelter, help and the use of our facilities long into the future. Huggard will maintain and develop key services within its remit of supplying support and advice, clothing, washing facilities, accommodation, recreation, personal development, hot meals and where possible voluntary opportunities for our service users to regain their confidence before moving back into the local community.
All this will continue to be achieved within a welcoming and positive atmosphere. Our staff strive to offer a safe and calmly-efficient environment of non-exclusive mentoring on the all too familiar problems faced by our service users.
In the Huggard Centre our visitors never need to feel excluded or powerless.
These services had up to that point been provided by a charity known as Cardiff Cyrenians, which had ceased operating due to financial difficulties. The Cyrenians had also operated eight resettlement houses for people moving on from its hostel, a number of which Huggard has subsequently taken over.
CASH started operating in temporary facilities (known as “The Cabins”) situated on land at the top of Bute Street. These were by all accounts primitive affairs but nevertheless a valuable source of shelter for those with nowhere else to go. It was then that Bob and Ethel Huggard became involved.
Bob was an Irishman who had settled in Wales and built up a number of successful businesses. He had a strong desire to help those people who had suffered ill fortune and a special interest in homelessness and support for those with mental health problems. He had given some money each year also to the Cyrenians. When the Cyrenians got into financial difficulties, The Reverend Douglas Bale, a prominent local church minister with a strong social conscience, was enlisted to try to rescue them. He approached Bob Huggard, hoping merely that his annual donation would continue.
Bob astounded him by agreeing to give him £195,000 if he could build “something decent” to replace The Cabins. This money was not only hugely important in itself, it also allowed Doug to go and convince other potential donors that his plans were not pie in the sky, but really capable of achieving something. This, in turn, enabled him to solicit further donations, including £90,000 from the local authority.
After that things moved quickly, thanks largely to the drive of Doug Bale and a number of energetic and resourceful lieutenants he gathered around him. CASH was formed as a limited company with effect from 6th June 1990 and received confirmation of its registration as a charity in July 1990. The land on which the current centre is situated was acquired from the Cardiff Bay Development Corporation and Stradform builders were commissioned to build the centre.
Unfortunately, however, whilst he lived long enough to see the land acquired and to be certain that the vision he shared with Doug for a high quality facility for homeless people would be realised, Bob Huggard died in August 1991. His wife, Ethel, continued to take a keen interest in the activities of CASH and latterly Huggard after it changed its name in 2007. She died in 2008.
Much of the Huggard Centre’s design was developed by distilling the wealth of experience earned by our staff over 22 years of helping the homeless.
In 2012 The Huggard’s new building has won not one but two Chartered Institute of Housing Welsh Housing Awards: from the. ‘Development of the Year’ and ‘Outstanding leadership by a local authority’ which is testament to the track record and working relationship the Huggard has developed with the Council.
The Huggard looks forward to maximising on this building’s potential in the near future.
Some of the initiatives we are proud to be involved with are:
Huggard’s Shopify page is doing very well and was developed as a project through the ideas and hard work of our staff.
The shop sells any designer clothes that are donated to Huggard, thus maximising the contribution of donations made to Huggard’s frontline work.
Since 18th September the shop has sold over £600 worth of goods and will be looking to capitalise on their hard work in 2014.
Please visit SHOPIFY page
The Bond Board
Huggard’s Bond Board helps single homeless people to access private rented accommodation through the provision of a rent deposit guarantee to landlords. This eliminates the need for an individual with minimal resources to find a large lump sum to secure private accommodation.
The Bond Board makes it possible for 150+ people (target passed by Oct. 2014) a year to move into private, sustainable accommodation within the Cardiff Area.
People benefitting from this scheme include tenants of Huggard low support housing and residents of other frontline organisations, such as the YMCA. Members of the public are also able to access this service through our ‘drop-in’ surgeries between 09.00 and 12.00 weekdays.
The Bond Board, works with landlords and support providers, including Cardiff’s Tenant Support Team, to help ensure the long term success of any tenancy and maintain sustainability within the local community.
All areas of this service will be moved forward in 2016.
Please visit our BOND BOARD page
The Huggard cafe opened its doors in August 2014 and since then has made itself a destination for local businesses, local government staff and students alike. It’s blend of comfortable surroundings, ambient music, high speed WiFi and customer loyalty card not only offers customers a unique set of benefits, but offers them tangible opportunities to help Huggard’s clients through their purchases.
We are providing training opportunities within the cafe for people who have experienced homelessness and providing them with the training, skills and experience that they need to gain employment.
Huggard is also looking at the viability of our cafe being a music, Gallery and hireable venue. These activities are apart from it’s recognised roles as a coffee house, Fare Trade outlet, destination meeting place and convenience (crisps, coke, takeaway Coffee etc) shop.
Please visit our CAFE page