Our homes have undoubtedly become even more vital since we have all been asked to stay in them. There have been no confirmed cases of the virus at the Nightshelter but just like for so many of us, the pandemic has had a huge impact on people’s lives. Here we share the story of one resident, Gianluca.

Many weeks ago, Gianluca knew that the Coronavirus was something to be taken very seriously. He had heard tales from his family and friends already in isolation in northern Italy near the worst affected area, Lombardy.

The virus began to take hold in the UK just at the moment things were about to change for Gianluca who has lived in England for many years. After spending several months at the Nightshelter he was finally back on track. His employer was impressed with his hard work and Gianluca had saved enough money to put a deposit down on a flat.

Then, just like for so many us, the Coronavirus changed everything. Suddenly his employer had to let him go, with a promise of giving him his job back when things return to normal. But sadly a promise doesn’t pay bills. Without a job, his landlord was no longer willing to rent him the flat.

It was a cruel blow made perhaps harder having spent months overcoming his personal struggles to build a brighter and more secure path forward. Addiction, unemployment and family breakdowns can sometimes feel out of our control but the Coronavirus arguably trumps them all.

So for Gianluca, the Nightshelter remains his home for now. Along with his fellow residents he is able to stay on site 24 hours a day under the new adapted service which enables residents to stay at home as directed.

He spends his time applying for jobs, eager to get the money coming back in. He would like to do something worthwhile during these challenging times. Until he finds a job he copes by keeping busy. Folding the Nightshelter sheets or mopping the floors help to pass the time and give purpose to his day.

As Gianluca points out.  For once, it doesn’t matter if you are rich or poor, we are all affected. Yes, you maybe isolating in a mansion with a pool but money can’t get you out of this predicament. We are all in it together.


The Nightshelter has responded and adapted to the Coronavirus crisis quickly and effectively and now accommodates all residents 24 hours a day. This means we can be the home that people who are currently homeless really need in order to stay safe during these challenging times. Our staff and resource costs have risen due to the expansion in our service and we are appealing for any help people can provide.  We know times are tough for everyone at the moment so please be reassured that every penny will help. Please click here for more about ways to donate. 

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