A gift that lasts

In November we launched our Christmas campaign: ‘A gift that lasts’, encouraging people to give up a little luxury and donate the amount to our JustGiving page, to support the vital work we do with homeless people around London. The donations could help towards counselling sessions, employability workshops, starter packages for our Teenage Parents’ Service or even a hot meal. We also encouraged members of the public to create gift bags for the homeless people in our hostels so that staff could distribute them on Christmas Day.

The response we received to this campaign has been overwhelming and we have a lot of people that we would like to express our gratitude and appreciation to.

The Breakfast Club at Boxpark in Croydon offered to act as a drop off point for the local community to deliver their gift bags to and put up posters and leaflets to spread the word.

Superdrug donated gift vouchers worth £210, which we used to purchase toiletries and make over 200 gift bags.

Marks & Spencer in Croydon donated a generous amount of toiletries and food and Tesco in Bromley provided an overwhelming supply of festive food to our service in the borough.

Fides, EY and Criteo  and St John the Evangelist each donated gift bags or contributions, which were beautifully wrapped and filled with many thoughtfully selected items.

Croydon schools Whitgift and Old Palace created over 130 gift bags and wrapped shoe boxes which included heart-warming personalised cards and messages for our customers. The 11-year-old boys from Whitgift school even sacrificed their Christmas lunch to come and deliver their contribution.

Once all the gift bags were collated and assigned to our hostels, Good Gym offered to run over 200 of the gift bags to our Croydon services.  Road Runners Mini Cabs, who were so helpful during our CR Zero 2020 Connections Week, helped deliver gift bags to Fitze Millennium Centre and our Bromley hostels.

By Monday 19 December, we had reached our target of 550 gift bags for the homeless people in our hostels, and had seen all the presents distributed to our services around London.

We also received some astonishingly generous donations through our JustGiving page from businesses and individuals many of which came with encouraging messages, supporting our cause and wishing us the best for the future.

We would like to extend a huge thank you to everyone who has been involved with our campaign. Your support, generosity and kindness, has been truly inspiring and will make such a difference to our customers this Christmas.

We would like to wish everyone a Happy Christmas and a peaceful New Year.



To read David’s story about what it is like to be homeless at Christmas and his hopes for the New Year- click here.

To read more about our Christmas campaign, click here.

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