When my mother was alive she spent 2 years of her life on the streets. She used to tell me stories of what it was like, how hard it was and how sometimes the kindness of people was the only thing that kept her going. Since then I have always gone out my way to help the homeless, simple things like buying a coffee and a sandwich, or even just say hi. After seeing the movie, A street cat named Bob, I couldn’t stop thinking about how there is so much more I could do to help.
So I thought back to one Christmas when my mum was on the streets in Liverpool. A lot of homeless people would hurt themselves just so they could go to the ER and have a safe warm place to sleep for a few hours. I was too young to be able to help my mother at this point so the only thing I could do was make up a pack for her. I put in some food, some personal luxury items many people take for granted and a few essentials. I remember her being so grateful she cried, then sharing out what she had with a few of her homeless friends. I always hated how there was nothing else I could do to help my own mother, but I know she would be proud of me trying to help others who are now in the same position she once was.
This is why I am asking for your help.
I am a Masters student at The University of Bolton, living in Bolton, who wants to help as many homeless people as possible. On the 9th of December The Coffee shop in the Bolton Market (https://www.facebook.com/thecoffeeshopbolton/) are providing Christmas dinners for the homeless and after speaking with them directly they are happy for me attend and hand out the survival packs.
Each survival pack will contain -
- Water - 15p
- Sandwich - £1
- Selection of light weight snacks - £1
- Fruit - 13p
- Space blanket - 58p
- Thermal Hat - £2
- Thermal Gloves - £2
- Thermal Socks - 58p
- Disposable Hand Warmers - £1
- Small First Aid Kit - £1.34
- Chap Stick - 46p
- Tooth Brush - 19p
- Tooth Paste - 35p
- Soap - 20p
- Baby wipes - 79p
- Tissues - 10p
- Deodorant - 79p
- Bolton Council support options leaflets
Each pack will cost £12.63 each. 10 packs = £126.30 / 20 packs =£252.60 / 30 packs £378.90 / 40 packs = £505 and so on.
At the moment I am aiming to make as many packs as possible, depending on the donations received there is also an option to add a sleeping bag to each pack. The sleeping bag costs £8.73 meaning each pack will total at £21.43 each. 10 packs = £213.60 / 20 packs = £427.20 / 30 packs = £640.80 and so on.
The winters getting much colder now and the homeless population is rising. We are so fortunate to have warm homes to go back to at the end of the night and family’s to surround ourselves with at Christmas. There is all sorts of reasons to why someone ends up on the streets, and it is not our place to judge. £12.70 is the price of a takeout meal, but for a homeless person it could be so much more. So I am asking for any help you can give this Christmas, I would really appreciate it and im sure the homeless people we manage to help will appreciate it even more.
I will be taking images of the survival packs a long with images of the Coffee shop and the survival pack hand out.