It was a bit disjointed this evening, much quieter than usual only 34 clients throughout the evening. Mind you a year ago we would have thought that was a huge number.
Jan and I received much less in the way of supermarket food this week but having said that we received lots of Pret and Greggs donations.
We now have two new volunteers to help us with the Pret pick up each week. They are going to work out a system between them. That means now we have just Greggs to think about at 5.30pm which is already in place. It’s a bit much for the kitchen as they have now two Greggs and one Pret arriving at the same time. It is what it is! So we need to help the kitchen if asked and just keep out the way if not needed. Today there was a lot!!!
Thorngrove school arrived this evening with a big cheque for £660. Their head boy and head girl from year 8 came too with lots of donations of toiletries, sleeping bags etc. The headmaster Adam said that hearing about the Soup Kitchen through John our volunteer who is also a parent at the school has really inspired the parents and children alike. John had done a presentation for us before Christmas and this money and these donations were the result. John knows our desperate need for a freezer so that is what the school has raised money for.
Thorngrove want to keep the Soup Kitchen as their charity for this year so that is amazing. They will keep an eye on the wish list too.
Occasionally are put in the position of having to deal with very distressed, sad individuals. This evening was no different. Over time we work very hard to gain respect and trust from our clients and support them when they are often at their lowest. Having a trained nurse, community officer and mental health professionals who come in on a voluntary basis to give their time and professionalism to help these people is priceless. Their experience allowed us to make the right decisions and calls to hopefully safeguard this individual so they get the help they so desperately need.
Bed Frame Wanted
One of our homeless is moving into accommodation soon. They need a double bed frame and small amount of furniture and transport to pick it up and deliver. The frame is priority.
We have a chap now to help if necessary to make donated bikes road worthy. Penny Post is a Hungerford paper they are going to set up a donation page to fund that for us. Terry who will fix the bikes will give his time for free and use second hand parts where possible.
Night Shelter Closing
It was a session of mixed emotions this evening, seeing some of our chaps talking about their new jobs or pending work however tinged with their fear and uncertainty of the night shelter closing and the uncertainty of their future. With that the sadness and feeling of despair that some of our clients live with and constantly battle every day.
Great to see P playing Jenga and Connect4. He has mentioned to me that Thursdays are the highlight of his week. As some of our clients find work the playing card group may change and evolve. It’s lovely to watch the socialisation and interaction of people from all walks of life.
Three birthdays this week. Jan in the kitchen is going to run out of candles!!