Charities hosting free festival in Canning Town to mark World Homeless Day

Brent's council tax increase will help support vital services such as help for the homeless

Caritas Anchor House and The Renewal Programme are hosting a free comedy festival at Rathbone Market on October 9. - Credit: PA

A free music, comedy and storytelling festival is due to take place in Canning Town.

Charities Caritas Anchor House and The Renewal Programme will be hosting the Raise the Roof event on Saturday, October 9 between 1.50pm and 3pm.

It forms part of the Rathbone Roots and Newham Unlocked Festivals.

Host, Quincy, will perform alongside fellow comic Victor Daniels with a line up of rising stars and veteran performers at the event in Rathbone Market.

Among the line up are AURA-KL, JayD1 and Navina who have experienced their own trials and triumphs with homelessness. All the acts were born and bred in Newham.

AURA-KL said: "My first ever festival stage performance is in my hometown and at the start of black history month? It's a dream I didn't know I wanted.

"I decided to live out my dream of being a rapper at the start of lockdown whilst street homeless and unemployed.

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"Music has given me the strength to keep going and document my experiences. I'm grateful to have the opportunity to share it."

Raise the Roof aims to raise awareness of the homelessness crisis in Newham on the eve of World Homeless Day (October 10). 

Newham has the highest level of homelessness in the country, according to Caritas Anchor House, with one in 23 people without a home in the borough. 

The charity helped 278 people on their journey away from homelessness last year.

It reports that all those who had been sleeping rough which it helped off the streets ended up continuing new tenancies.

The Renewal Programme runs a supported housing project which was created in 1972. It houses up to 50 people in Newham.

Caritas Anchor House CEO Amanda Dubarry
. Picture: Matt Grayson/Caritas Anchor House

Caritas Anchor House chief exec Amanda Dubarry. - Credit: Matt Grayson/Caritas Anchor House

Amanda Dubarry, chief executive of Caritas Anchor House, said: "We’ve been next to Rathbone Market for almost 60 years and it is great to be part of this free festival for the community.

"We’ve got some fantastic artists and comedians performing, some of them are our own residents and they will be raising awareness of homelessness on the eve of World Homeless Day.

"Covid has taught us we are stronger when we come together, so let's continue to support one another."

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