Our History: Changing Lives

Changing Lives has been helping the most vulnerable and socially excluded for over 45 years.

We began as a small charity in the North East called Tyneside Cyrenians, and later The Cyrenians, helping people who were experiencing homelessness through our hostels and day centres.

With the appointment of Stephen Bell in 2002, we began to look at homelessness as a symptom, and not a cause, of other chaotic problems, such as mental health issues and substance misuse. We began to tailor services to work with people before they were sleeping on the streets and worked on a preventative model as well as a reactive one.

Since then, our services have expanded in both provision and geography. We are now operating across the North East, Yorkshire, North West and the Midlands as a national organisation with over 500 members of staff and 550 volunteers helping over 17,500 people each year to change their lives for the better.

We re-branded as Changing Lives in 2013 to mark this growth. Throughout our near 50 years of operation, our core purpose has never changed. We are here to help people who are most in need, and today we are a national charity tackling social exclusion, in every form.

Together, we are Changing Lives.

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