Our history

About Centre 33

Centre 33 was founded in 1977 and takes its name from it early premises at 33 Hatfield Road, St Albans.  It moved to its current premises in 1991.  It is manned and managed almost entirely by over 150 volunteers. The charity does not employ anyone, although since late 2011 it has paid for part time help in running the volunteer rota, a crucial and time consuming task.

 

Centre 33 provides practical support for people who are in need, homeless or otherwise socially deprived.  Despite St Albans' affluent image, some people rough sleep in the area, others are living in temporary accommodation or relying on friends’ sofas. Some people are in need as a result of experiencing unemployment, family breakdown or eviction. They may for now have a roof over their heads but their lives can be precarious and they may need support.

 

Centre 33 aims to help these people by being somewhere warm and dry to meet, offering hot food and drinks, and by providing toiletries and shower facilities. The need is there; in 2019 there were around 10,000 visits to the centre by about 300 individuals, the largest number of meals we have served in any year.

 

Centre 33 is a winner of the prestigious Queen's Award for Voluntary Service.
 

"A short while ago I lost my job, then quickly afterwards my flat. I didn't realise until then how fast a person can go into a downward spiral, and if it wasn't for the likes of yourselves giving me help, and without pre-judging me, my situation would have worsened. I'm one of the lucky ones in that I managed to find a new job and accommodation." Feedback from a Centre 33 visitor