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Thank you from HOPE this Christmas

 

Well, Christmas is nearly here – each year I say that I’ll be better prepared next time, yet again its crept up and almost hit me in the face!

Fortunately, at HOPE we are much better prepared.  Staff know who is working which shifts, who can have their turkey and tinsel at home, and who will be at the hostel on Christmas day.

 

Homelessness is a hot topic at the moment as more and more people become affected.  There are articles in the press almost every day highlighting individual cases.  TV has featured various stories and re-run “Cathy Come Home” with its brutal message of how easy it can happen and, several films were released in 2016 including “A Street Cat Named Bob” with its rave revues.

 

Within Westminster there is a bill being discussed which could widen the help available to those without a bed.  Figures vary but it is estimated that currently fewer than ¼ of those who are homeless can expect help as a right.  Its left to HOPE and other such organisations to pick up the pieces.  But these charities can only do that by getting support from local people.  We at HOPE can only offer the support we do through the donations we receive; money, food, clothes, tradesmen who work for “free” or businesses who give us materials – all are absolutely invaluable.

 

Many give anonymously, and literally run off before we can get their name, so its not for the publicity – its because they want to give something back.  Perhaps they were once homeless themselves, we helped their son, daughter, mother or father.  They have seen someone sleeping in a shop doorway, don’t want to approach them themselves, but do want to help in some way.

 

What is clear is that this year, in just 23 days time, we shall be able to give all our residents and those sleeping rough, an individual present.  That is possible only because of the kind generosity of local people who have responded to our Christmas “Shoe Box” appeal.  Social media has been going frantic; we’ve reached over 7,000 in September, & almost 20,000 in October, people viewing our Facebook & Twitter seeking information and guidance on what to do and how to help.

Christmas shoe box and charley Christmas shoe box donation Christmas shoe boxes

We know people care because of the hand written notes that are in the boxes; a few kind words which mean so much.

 

Whatever your reason, on behalf of those who have no bed, but will know that someone out there really does care, THANK YOU!

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