Our History

Founded by the All Saints Sisters of the Poor in 1986, The Porch has become a place of welcome, friendship and encouragement for hundreds of homeless men and women over the years.

The centre was run initially by volunteers at All Saints Convent in Magdalen Road. The project has since grown into an independent charity with its own staff. We are the only Oxford day centre open six days a week. We provide around 200 people a year with an opportunity to move towards a more positive lifestyle, away from addiction and dependency.

An innovation at the time that it was introduced by the founders was to include homeless users as members of the centre, in order to incorporate their views in decision making. This practice continues today making The Porch an exemplar for other day centres.

The Porch is started by St All Saints Sisters of the Poor Convent to provide snacks and sandwiches to homeless in Oxford.

A new larger venue is opened to provide daytime support to homeless and vulnerably housed people in addition to fresh food.

The Bishop of Oxford becomes our Patron.

The Food Standards Agency awards our two kitchens top 5 star rating.
We win 12 first prizes at Elder Stubbs Festival for our allotment grown produce.
Nicola our Porch Preserves volunteer is runner up Oxfordshire Volunteer of the Year.

Our director wins an Oxfordshire High Sherriff Award for ‘commitment to ‘enabling homeless to get their foot on the first rung of the ladder out of dereliction, homelessness and unemployment’.

We commemorate 30 years of helping the homeless.

We are honoured with the Queens Award for Voluntary Service.

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