This year round our volunteers sleeping in the usual spot under the railway underpass in Macclesfield. It was a cold and damp evening but we were all prepared for the weather. We considered ourselves very lucky as we had food, drinks, sleeping bags, blankets and Pudsey the dog, who was a lovely hot water bottle!
Only a couple of us managed to get some sleep, the rest of the time was spent talking to a large group of young people who came to see what we were doing and we chatted to people passing through. It got quite cold around 3:00 a.m. but we took a trip to Tescos to warm up and keep ourselves awake.
Once dawn had broken, the underpass was deserted, so we cleared up our belongings and headed home. All of us thankful of a warm bath or shower, plus a cosy bed awaiting. It reminded us to be grateful of what we have and to raise awareness of what others are in need of.
We have been doing this for five years and feel we need to make some changes now to our approach. Other people have contacted us offering support through the Rucksack Project, which is where people donate a full rucksack with clothes, toiletries and other useful items for anyone Street homeless. Gregg's are supplying us with extra food four times a week from their shop in Macclesfield. This is a massive help to us providing meals through the week for the homeless and struggling in our community. Tesco have always supported us and provide us with regular food, hampers, clothes and other household items. A huge thank you to each of our sponsors, and each one of our volunteers. Cheshire Streetwise is making a difference in the community because of you. Thank you.
So, we would ask you to watch this space, as more exciting plans are afoot to make a difference!