This week we’ve been giving out Christmas Hampers to some of the most vulnerable people we work with.
Thanks to a record number of donations, we’ve been able to put together more parcels than previous years, including some for the homeless people that we met during the Love Your Neighbour “Week of Kindness” event a few weeks ago, who are sleeping in the streets around our offices.
We’re also passing some of the donations on to other local organisations, such as the hostel we visited during the Week of Kindness, and our friends at SIFA Fireside.
We’ve even been able to save up some food and toiletries so that we can give them to people who need them in the coming months because – as this year has really shown us – people need help all year round, not just at Christmas.
Who do we work with?
Two of our outreach services, Gateway Healthy Futures and the Pregnancy Outreach Workers Service (POWS), work with people who are in the most “at risk” categories – and each week our staff are seeing more and more people in dire need of basic essentials.
POWS works with pregnant women who usually have a low medical risk and high social risk, dealing with issues including temporary accommodation, homelessness, substance misuse, domestic abuse, offending, newly arrived communities, poor mental health and safeguarding.
The Gateway Healthy Futures service provides a one-stop-shop for people with a wide range of social needs. GPs can refer anyone that needs non-medical help, so that includes people who have issues around things like housing, alcohol, finances, mental health, benefits, social isolation, and much more. Our Practice Navigators provide reassurance and a point of contact for the people they work with, as well as vital practical support.
We’ve also opened up the food and baby bank to our Health Trainers this year, as some of our Health Trainers are working with people who are in need of basic essentials too.
We’re incredibly grateful for everything you’ve sent us. As you’ll see in the video, every available space in the office is now full of donated food and toiletries! Thank you so, so much. (But please don’t send any more tinned peas!)
We’d especially like to thank:
The pupils and teachers of Holte School
Vineyard Network Church
Healthy Minds Northfield
Ambition School Leadership
NHS St Chads (Worcs & B’ham)
Birmingham Chamber of Commerce
Staff and friends of Gateway