A lived experience-led project, kickstarting major change towards better healthcare access and life expectancy for people facing homelessness.


Working in partnership with On Our Radar our aims are:

  1. Increase key decision makers’ awareness of the barriers to healthcare faced by people experiencing homelessness across the country
  2. Create a movement of people experiencing homelessness, influencing decision makers and holding them to account for changes in practice and policy.

How will we achieve them?

To create the scale of change we want to see, we will use a range of methods:

21 citizen journalists

each year reporting their stories through a dedicated microsite: the Listen Up! hub.

Interviews and focus groups

with 360 people with experience of homelessness, annually.

Themed briefings and webinars

to share insights with decision makers.

Self-advocacy training

for 250 people experiencing homelessness annually, to gain awareness of their rights.

Project elements

1. Better evidence and insight

We’re planning to conduct qualitative interviews and focus groups with hundreds of people with experience of homelessness annually, to ensure a multitude of voices and experiences are heard.

We’re also planning to use an innovative ‘community journalism’ approach, similar to that successfully used for our COVID-19 stories project.

Drawing on the expertise of our partners On Our Radar, who specialise in surfacing stories from unheard groups worldwide, volunteers with experience of homelessness will receive journalism training to use media such as writing, voice recording and filmmaking.

Their important stories about healthcare access will be posted and amplified online creating a unique platform of raw, on-the-ground reports.

2. Involving decision makers

The stories and insights we gather will be used to highlight issues to key decision makers through briefings, webinars, meetings and working groups.

An action hub on the Groundswell website will make a record of insights, actions, progress and responsibilities.

3. Ensuring people know their rights

Listen Up! will ensure that  people experiencing homelessness are aware of their rights by delivering self-advocacy training across the country.

The training will also ensure they have the confidence, knowledge, skills and connections to hold key decision makers to account for change.

Additionally, as always Groundswell’s unique progression programme will provide support and opportunities for volunteers to work towards their goals and overcome the barriers that may be preventing them from being achieved.

The project is funded by a Comic Relief ‘Change Makers’ grant.

The Change Maker programme aims to find innovative solutions to problems affecting vulnerable people that have been overlooked or under-resourced at a local, regional and national level. Each project must work towards an overall, big picture change.

Now live!

We’ve launched the Listen Up! hub! Collating raw reports on the experiences, concerns and feedback of a network of trained community reporters experiencing homelessness.

Living all around the UK, the reporters are using their mobile phones to document their stories.

Through the hub, we want to elevate their voices, challenge stereotypes, and ultimately help decision makers end harmful health inequalities.

How you can support us

We see the launch of the hub as the start of a movement of people, all united in the belief that elevating the voices and raw insights of our reporters will challenge stereotypes and help decision makers end homeless health inequalities.

Here are some ways you can support us and get involved:

1. Join our mailing list for regular hub reports, research findings and event info straight to your inbox.

2. Vote via this one question survey for what you’d like us to report on.

3. SHARE! Please tell people about us through social media and your networks! We’ll be posting regularly from Groundswell’s TwitterFacebook and Instagram pages.

Who we are

  • Jo Brown – Research Manager
  • Jenny McNeill – Project Manager
  • Mat Amp – Project Officer
  • Tess Tainton – Project Officer
  • Steve Walker – Project Officer

How to find out more

Contact Jenny McNeill on:

Email: [email protected]

Phone: 07512084656.

Meet Jenny McNeill, Project Manager

“The Listen Up! project builds on the important work of the COVID-19 Monitoring project and we’ve learned from this that community reporting offers real insight into a range of challenges faced by people experiencing homelessness and healthcare barriers.

Alongside our rich stories from reporters we have ambitious plans to conduct extensive peer research and co-design rights based training so that those facing homelessness access the right healthcare we all deserve.”

Jenny’s top priorities:

  • Co-designing all aspects of the Listen Up! project with people experiencing homelessness
  • Sharing stories from our community reporters and ensuring the voices of people experiencing homelessness are heard by decision makers and responded to.
  • Building a research evidence base to understand the barriers to healthcare affecting people experiencing homelessness
  • Building a movement of people who have the skills, knowledge and confidence to self advocate for their healthcare rights.