Homelessness charity Emmaus celebrates 20th anniversary

Summer fun at Emmaus Hertfordshire.

Summer fun at Emmaus Hertfordshire. - Credit: Emmaus

A charity set up to help people get back on their feet after experiencing homelessness is celebrating 20 years of transforming lives.

Emmaus Hertfordshire will be marking two decades since it first opened with a summer open day and Jubilee party this Saturday from 11.30am-3.30pm.

The event will feature live music, food and drink, vintage pop-up stalls, vinyl sales, and special offers in their charity shop, and celebrates the impact Emmaus has had on the local community.

Mark [not his real name], used to be homeless, and is currently being supported by the charity: “It will be great to welcome everyone into our home and share what we do. This place has helped me so much and it’ll be great to celebrate!” 

The Emmaus Hertfordshire shop.

The Emmaus Hertfordshire shop. - Credit: Emmaus

Emmaus Hertfordshire, previously known as Emmaus St Albans, began as a group of volunteers in the late 1990s, when Lord Runcie, a former Archbishop of Canterbury and Bishop of St Alban’s Cathedral expressed an interest in opening an Emmaus Community in his hometown.

In 2002 the organisation opened its doors for the first time and since then has been at the heart of community support. It supports people who have experienced homelessness by giving them a home, meaningful work, and the opportunity to regain lost self-esteem and rebuild their lives. 

Chief executive of Emmaus Hertfordshire, Duncan Lewis, said: “Emmaus Hertfordshire has achieved a huge amount in the last 20 years, helping hundreds of homeless people to regain their independence and contributing to the local community through partnerships with other charities.

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"The fact that our 20th anniversary coincides with the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee means we have a fantastic opportunity to celebrate two great milestones at once and to showcase our work to our friends, neighbours, and supporters.” 

Find out more information about the event via the Emmaus Hertfordshire website emmaus.org.uk/hertfordshire