Christmas appeal 2019
Text XMAS to 70450
to donate £10*
which could help to pay for a Christmas meal in a warm environment with our friendly team
While many of us are enjoying the festivities in the lead up to Christmas, those who are sleeping rough on the streets don’t have the same luxury. Winter is especially challenging for homeless people, and life on the streets, or in precarious accommodation, can be a lonely, dangerous existence, with many struggling to cope with abuse, ill-health or addiction.
Christmas is regarded as the season of giving and spending time with loved ones, so I ask you to please spare a thought - and if you can, a donation - for local homeless people this Christmas.
Just £10 can bring a little Christmas cheer for those, like Marie, who have been through a traumatic time. By donating to HARP this Christmas, you will provide so much more than a Christmas meal - you will give local homeless people compassion, safety and a friendly smiling face throughout the festive period and beyond.
Many years ago, Marie was living a chaotic lifestyle due to mental health challenges, coping by self-medicating and stuck in a cycle of drug and alcohol addiction. But with support from HARP, she has been free from addiction for three years, and homelessness was behind her - or so she thought.
Suddenly evicted by her landlord with no notice and nowhere else to go, Marie was shocked to find herself desperately needing HARP’s service again.
“When I was suddenly evicted,
I felt so sick and I was physically shaking. I hadn’t felt fear like it since being in recovery, and just
didn’t know what to do.”
Support someone like Marie this Christmas by making a donation today.
“It was a really awful experience. As a recovering addict, my first thought was
‘I can’t do this, I need a drink’, but instead I came straight to HARP.”
We were able to provide accommodation within 24 hours, but temporary housing was just the beginning as Marie's mental health challenges came to the surface.
“After I came to HARP, my mental health deteriorated. I’ve got post-traumatic stress disorder and a borderline personality disorder, and these were really triggered by being evicted. There were times when I couldn’t even come out of my room, but the staff would notice this and knock on my door or leave me a note, letting me know they were there for me without overwhelming me."
“I knew I couldn’t stay in that state - it wasn’t good for me or my recovery. So, with encouragement from the staff, I went back to college”.
As well as attending college and training courses, Marie also volunteers at HARP, running recovery-focussed groups and a women’s group: “There is no qualification like life experience, and keeping busy by studying and volunteering gave me a purpose and helped to rebuild my self-esteem”.
Marie is passionate about helping others on the road to recovery: “I want people to know that there’s a way out, even for people who aren’t ready to make a change yet. You can achieve, even if you’re homeless. I have done it with the support of HARP.
“I can’t stress it enough - there is a way out, don’t give up!”
“Without HARP’s support I wouldn’t be where I am today.”
Marie said she is extremely grateful for all the support she has received from HARP: “I can’t praise HARP enough. It’s like a community. I feel like I’m part of something and I have people for support. There’s always someone here to listen, and I have never felt like I had to struggle on my own. I am extremely grateful to all the staff, volunteers and supporters of HARP!”
Thanks to the support she has received, which is only possible thanks to donations from people like you, Marie has turned her life around. Marie has moved into her own flat, marking an important milestone in her journey away from homelessness. I’m sure you agree that people like Marie deserve a Christmas just like you and me.
All of our 208 residents - who without HARP might be sleeping rough this Christmas - as well as those still sleeping on the streets, are offered a meal, a Christmas present and a special day at HARP over this Christmas period. This can only happen thanks to your support.
Show your support to more people like Marie this Christmas by donating to our Christmas Appeal.
By clicking below to donate, you will help to provide so much more than a Christmas meal; you will give local homeless people compassion, safety and a friendly smiling face throughout the festive period and beyond…
*Texts cost £10 plus one standard rate message.
Donations to our Christmas appeal will help us to provide meals, entertainment, activities and much needed care and support to local homeless people over the Christmas period and beyond. All donations will be spent where we feel the need is greatest. Many people like to support HARP with non-monetary gifts at Christmas time. Click here to find out more about the items we need to provide presents for local homeless people, and to support our efforts over the festive period.