Emmaus Village Carlton

Emmaus Village Carlton is a homeless charity based in North Bedfordshire offering active support to formerly homeless people and we provide what we think of as a real workable alternative to homelessness. Our site is located in Carlton, Bedfordshire ten miles from Bedford and also right on the border of Northamptonshire and Buckinghamshire, less than 20 miles from Milton Keynes.

  • We Offer a Home. At Emmaus, homeless people find a place where they can enjoy companionship and support. Each person has their own room whilst living in the Community. When a Companion wants to move on, he or she will be assisted to find accommodation and work.
  • We Offer Work. All Companions (residents) work full-time and there is work for everyone. The Shops and Bistro provide a commercial setting where skills can be learnt in a friendly atmosphere.
  • We Offer a New Beginning. Emmaus offers homeless people a fresh start in life with the support of the community around them. They can stay as long as they wish and are offered opportunities to acquire skills. When a Companion wants to move on, he or she will be assisted to find accommodation and work.

Tracey's Story

The Emmaus Movement

Emmaus Village Carlton - Abbe Pierre

EVC is a member of the worldwide Federation of Emmaus Communities. The aim of Emmaus is to turn charity on it s head. It not only offers homeless people the opportunity to help themselves, but to help others - it is the latter which
allows the rediscovery of a sense of purpose in life. The following is an extract from the account by Abbe Pierre of the birth of the Emmaus Movement in post-war France: "... The first Companions? They came because they were broken or in despair. It was as simple as that. The first companion was a failed suicide. Twenty years earlier he had killed his father in a moment of desperate anger. Pardoned after twenty years of hard labour, he had returned to an unbearable family situation. He tried to kill himself. I was called to help. But when I spoke to him, I could tell that he was not listening. There was only one thought in his mind, and that was to try again and this time not to fail his suicide. That's when Emmaus was born. Because, without thinking, without premeditation, I did the opposite of charity. Instead of saying: "You are miserable, I will give you a roof over your head, work and money", circumstances made me do exactly the opposite. I could only say, because it was the truth: "You are desperately unhappy and I have nothing to give you. I have already given away my own family fortune. As a Member of Parliament, I am not poor, but I have nothing but debts. My money is spent before I receive it, to repair the house and lodge those in need. This is where I live, dividing my life between Parliament, my constituency and the maintenance of my Hostel I am tired and can't respond to all these calls for help. So please, wouldn't you like to help me to help others?" That was the birth of Emmaus. At a time of continued homelessness in this country and tragedy and destruction elsewhere in the world, Emmaus is as relevant today as ever.

How can you help?

There are many ways that you can assist us in our work here at Emmaus Village Carlton:

  • Offer your time or expertise as a volunteer? EVC relies heavily on the support of its many volunteer workers, roles for these are varied and may include: the provision of friendship and support for our Companions (as Emmaus residents are known), working in our businesses which include everything from catering or driving our vans through to working in our shops or recycling operations. There is a suitable job at EVC for anyone and everyone and volunteer workers are absolutely necessary for our continued success!
  • Make a donation of your unwanted furniture or household goods? The model of almost every Emmaus enterprise in the world is to generate income through the collection and resale of unwanted household goods. Emmaus aims to provide a service to the wider community both by providing affordable goods to those in need and by diverting goods which would otherwise require disposal at the taxpayer's expense. If you have furniture or any household goods which you know longer require could you donate them to help with our work at EVC? Our Drop-off point is open on-site 24 / 7 and for items of furniture we are even able to collect from your address with one of our vans.
  • Make a financial contribution? Since its inception in 2000 EVC has expanded its activities and facilities at an amazing rate. We are constantly working towards new and innovative developments of our facilities. This has only been possible thanks to the generous donations of many private individuals and grant-making bodies. Would you be able to support our work by offering such a contribution?

If you feel you may able to help EVC in any of the ways listed please contact us today by clicking the button below.