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Down Not Out in Leicester

31 January 2012

We love an invitation to visit BIG-funded projects, so we jumped at the chance to attend the launch of the exciting new Down Not Out Project at Coffee Republic in Leicester.

Down Not Out is a Leicester-based community news agency, unique in being led by people with experience of being homeless. A joint project between Citizens’ Eye and Action Homeless, the news agency has been set up through a Big Lottery Fund Reaching Communities grant of £139,960 to bring vital volunteering, training and work opportunities to develop skills for independent living and break the cycle of repeat homelessness.

We spoke to Rob Parkinson, Chief Executive of Action Homeless, who told us how the project will work.

Through a range of media outlets in print, on line and in radio, Down Not Out will create a platform for homeless people to have a voice on issues that matter to them and the local community. John Coster, editor of Citizens Eye, gave us the background to the project and how it has evolved over time.

Giving homeless people in and around Leicester a voice and a platform to speak about the issues effecting them and influence change, is central to what the project wants to achieve. Maggs Scragg, an Action Homeless service user and a sub- editor at the agency, spoke to us about how she feels the project can bring about change.

View a transcript of these videos

For more information and how to get involved visit

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