October at Open House is jam-packed with exciting events on housing and homelessness. Here’s a short taster of what’s to come but if you’d like more information, please have a look at out What’s On page or find us on Facebook.
On the 3rd October, we’re hosting Dr Sara Reis from the Women’s Budget Group to talk about their latest report ‘A Home of Her Own, Women & Housing’. Sara will be joined by Shaista Aziz, Founder of the Labour Homelessness Campaign and Vice Co-Chair of the Fabiens Women Network and local campaigner Fran Rogers.
We talk a lot about the need for more social housing and a question we often get in response is ‘but how do we make it happen!?’. So, om 9th October, we’re asking just that. We’ll be joined by Lou Downe, Director of Design and Transformation for Land and Housing for the UK Government and Joe Beswick, Head of Land and Housing at the New Economics Foundation.
On the 10th October we’re marking World Homelessness Day with the launch of the Oxford Homeless Movement. Come and drop in anytime between 3pm and 6.30pm to find out how organisations and individuals across our city are coming together to work towards a future where no person should have to sleep rough on the streets of Oxford. We’ll have arts & crafts and a chance for you to sign up to the Oxford Homeless Movement charter.
Have you ever wondered about setting up your own housing cooperative? Or exploring co-housing? Or another form of community-led housing? Oxford is full of people who are taking matters into their own hands, making themselves the developer and building housing the way they want it, for prices they can afford. Come along to our Community-Led Housing Clinic on 14th October to kick start your own community-led housing journey.
On 16th October we’re joined by a panel of experts involved in the creation or management of spaces that serve the LGBTQIA+ community. We’ll be talking about ‘queerspace’ and how their disappearances is leading to a serious problem with LGBTQIA+ homelessness and insecure housing.
The Cowley Road local-history project is taking over Open House on the the 17th October and they want your memories of Oxford’s favourite Road.
We’re very excited about the 19th October when we’ll be joined by the Oxford Poetry library for a whole day of poetry, writing and arts & crafts and a challenge to see if we can make a ‘zine’ in a day. A few months ago we produced Issue One of ‘Oxford is My Home’ a community-made collection of the hidden stories of housing and homelessness in Oxford. On the 19th we’ll be making Issue Two and we welcome anyone and everyone who has had the experience of making Oxford their home to come and contribute.
Om October 23rd we’re asking ‘does a home solve homelessness?’ and will be joined by Tom Wynne-Morgan from Homes England, local architects Transition by Design and Mel Nowicki from Oxford Brookes University to explore how architects and designers are engaging with the issues around homelessness.
October 26th will be our final day of opening and we’re going out with a bang. We’re delighted to be hosting the London Renters Union who will be running an afternoon workshop on renters rights and how people who rent can stand up to bad landlords and poor housing. After the workshop we’ll be hosting a panel discussion with Sarah Arnold from the New Economics Foundation who co-authored their ‘Getting Rents Under Control’ report and local activists. Not to be missed!
All events at Open House are free, however we do collect donations at the end of each event to cover speaker expenses and other running costs for Open House.
If you would like your bus fare to and from Open House refunding then please just ask one of our volunteers.
Open House is a single room shop with large windows that face out onto Little Clarendon Street, a small shopping street. There is a small kitchen at the back with a single, unisex toilet. We sometimes play music quietly but are happy to turn it off or down on request.
Our front door is 87.5cm at the narrowest point and whilst the shop is accessible to wheelchairs, at present we unfortunately are not able to provide a fully wheelchair accessible toilet. There is a 1.5m walk to the toilet from the nearest wheelchair accessible area.
Directly outside the shop there are free 30 minute parking bays and the restriction ends at 18.00.
We are working to ensure that our events are as accessible as possible to all our visitors. Open House is a dry space and there will be no alcohol at events. We are happy to provide interpreters or BSL Interpreters but as a tiny, volunteer-led project we need advance notice. If you have any additional needs that you would like to discuss with us before visiting the shop, please email us firstname.lastname@example.org