Since Monday, Eindhoven has had a new homeless shelter. The Klokgebouw will be able to accommodate 50 people in the coming period.
“It is a shelter for so-called homeless people who don’t have any rights. That sounds a bit odd. But in the Netherlands, you have entitled and non-entitled homeless people,” Thijs Eradus, of Springplank040, one of the initiators of the shelter, says.
“The latter often consists of non-Dutch people. The Dutch government has told them to go back to their own country. In practice, this is often more difficult.”
“In an emergency, these people can still be helped. That could mean when it’s freezing. Or as is currently the case with the stricter anti-corona measures.” says Thijs. These are mainly Central and Eastern European people. They’ve become homeless in Eindhoven for various reasons.
“We told them last weekend already. As of this week, they can come here. They have a bed here, can shower, get a meal. There’s a communal area too,” Thijs continues.
The camping beds have divisions between them. So there’s enough room to keep a distance and prevent the spread of the coronavirus. The shelter is between 650 and 800m2; 300m2 is made up of the dormitories.
There are also separate rooms for men and women. The shelter occupies various rooms in the Klokgebouw building. Fontys is currently taking exams there as well. However, the shelter’s operation hours don’t coincide with Fontys’ activities.
“The venue will be open from late afternoon until 08:30. After that, people can go to a day care centre. This shelter will be open for at least the next two weeks,” Eradus explains.
After that, we’ll see whether we need to extend it. That depends on the weather and any extended anti-corona rules.” On the first night, 17 people used the facilities.
During the first COVID-19 wave, there was also an extra shelter for Eindhoven’s destitute. That was in the middle of a residential area, in a school’s gym.
Editor: Melinda Walraven