Teenagers’ crusade to help the homeless in Mansfield

Homeless person
Homeless person

Two groups of teenagers have joined forces to collect and distribute vital goods to support the homeless in Mansfield and Ashfield.

Young people from Nottinghamshire County Council’s youth service and Garibaldi College and the non-profit voluntary charitable trust Helping The Homeless, have collected and distributed a huge amount of donated goods since before Christmas while working at the Beacon Project and Temple Trust soup kitchen in Mansfield town centre.

Helping The Homeless is a charitable trust organised by teenagers including Jordan Turner which campaigns locally through its website and Facebook pages. It runs a successful outreach programme and works with other charities and groups including Underdog to help tackle homelessness.

Jordan, 17, said: “I live in a nice house, have a good education and have a great supporting family and these people have none of that. I want them to start believing in themselves and try to get their life back on track.”

His organisation joined forces with teenagers from The Garrage Young People’s Centre, some of whom also study at Garibaldi College in Forest Town, to collect items to distribute during the Christmas period. The youth group members are Danielle Streets, Billy Scott, May Roberts, Cameron Kalkan, Cal Smith, Autumn Cassidy, Joshua Horner and Bryony Hajman.

Danielle, 15, organised a ‘Wanted’ poster appealing for donations which was posted up around the town centre. She said: “We heard about the work of Help the Homeless through our youth centre leader Zoe Stimpson who has volunteered to support homeless people for many years. We immediately wanted to get involved and the response from everyone since before Christmas to donate so much has been brilliant.”

Items including women’s and men’s clothes, tinned food, sleeping bags, tents, quilts and shoes are making a vital difference to people in need.

Donations from the community have been so generous and the work of the young people has been so committed, there are still car and garage loads of clothes and food to distribute over the coming weeks.

Coun Liz Plant, Vice-Chairman of the Children and Young People’s Committee, at Nottinghamshire County Council said: “It is a wonderful example of initiative, belief and determination from all of these young people to help others in need and will support from generous donations from so many people. They can be rightly proud of what they have already achieved.”

Find out more about the work of Help the Homeless: Facebook page: www.facebook.com/helpingthehomeless.mansfield and website: www.helping-the-homeless.co.uk