Big hearted Barnsley fans involved in the brilliant West Stand Bogs fanzine do their bit for the community in a wonderful act of generosity raising £8840 (almost the price of a season ticket at Arsenal!) for a homeless project in the area.
Message of thanks from BCDP:
Barnsley Churches Drop-in Project is open 3 days a week and provides hot food and a warm welcome for the homeless and those in need in Barnsley. We’re currently serving around 250 to 300 meals a week to the borough’s most vulnerable people. This includes young and old people, and families. Some of our clients have issues with drugs or alcohol, others are struggling because of welfare reform, illness or relationship breakdowns, many are living on the fringes of society and there are few places they can feel accepted and welcome.
The number of people we see continues to grow, in 2011 we served 7438 meals, and in 2012 – 9651 meals, in 2013 – 12114 meals and last year in 2014 we served 14846 meals. The project has never cancelled a session, through wind and snow. This year we opened on Christmas Day and served 52 Christmas dinners as well as giving essential items such as toiletries, socks, hats and gloves.
West Stand Bogs recent fundraiser has raised an astonishing £8840 to help continue the work of the project. The money has helped fund our food and gifts for Christmas 2014, and will fund Christmas this year too. We are also able to purchase a fridge and maintain a stock of sleeping bags. When someone comes to us with nothing, it is a life changing thing for us to be able to offer a sleeping bag. As we are reliant on goodwill and donations there are times when we have not been able to offer this simple item; having the funding in place to provide gives us huge peace of mind.
The money will also stretch to provide fruit for every person who attends, for every session for the next 2 years. That’s around 30,000 pieces of fruit! Helping our clients to receive good nutrition is very important to us. When a person is hungry, it is very hard to think about making long term or life changing decisions. Some of our clients have said that there have been times when they would have died had it not been for Barnsley Churches Drop-in Project. That is hugely sad but makes us all the more determined to continue feeding and caring for those who need us.
The difference that West Stand Bogs donation has made to our project is huge. It helps us to plan for the future, confident that we are able to provide for the needs of all our clients. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your generosity.