Joining an Emmaus Community
Are you homeless or at risk of homelessness?
Are you looking for a supportive place to live and work?
Are you are a referral agency, friend or family member working with someone who needs a home?
Emmaus Communities offer a safe environment and support people in dealing with the many issues surrounding homelessness, enabling them to regain control of their lives by living and working alongside others. Most Communities can accept people who present with complex problems provided the Community as a whole is able to support them.
The overriding principles in deciding admission are:-
- Whether the Community can provide a safe environment for the applicant, the Community and others.
- Whether the Community can meet the needs and offer appropriate support to an applicant.
The people who live and work in Emmaus Communities are known as companions. You can read about some Companions here in their own words. Emmaus is not a religious organization and Communities welcome people of all faiths or none.
If you join an Emmaus Community, you will:
- be living in a safe place with other Companions
- work full-time on the Community social business or in the Community home
- receive your board and lodging (rent paid for by Housing Benefit), a weekly spending allowance and some money set aside for you when you leave.
- sign off Benefits like Job Seekers Allowance
- receive holidays and allowances to go on holidays
- stay for as long or short a time as you choose
- have your own room
- have meals, toiletries, heating, laundry facilities provided for you
- be expected to follow strictly the Community’s rules, in particular that no violence, drugs or alcohol are permitted in the Community.
- give you the chance to improve your quality of life
- encourage and support you in tackling issues such as:
- mending relationships
- further education
- achieving better health
- encourage you to help others through our programme of “solidarity” (see below)
The Emmaus ethos is to help others who are worse off. We call this Solidarity and it has many faces. It might involved helping local people by providing discounted furniture or helping clean up a park. It might be raising money for national or international causes. Everyone in Emmaus is encouraged to get involved in Solidarity - everyone has a contribution to make.
Where we are
Community life can vary depending on the size and location of the Community. Some are in city centre locations and other rural areas. You can find a list of Emmaus Communities and their contact details here. Please note that Emmaus Groups are projects working to set up Communities and so cannot take Companions at the present time.
The joining process
Each Emmaus Community deals with the admission of new Companions independently, so you will need to contact a particular Community about joining. They will be able to tell you more about the process and when a space might be available or if there is a waiting list.
You can download a referral form here - see “Page resources” below. If you are looking for a place for yourself, use the “Emmaus Community Application Form”. If you are a referral agency, use the “referral agency form”.
We suggest that you contact a Community before sending them your referral form. You can find contact details for Communities here.