Well-wishers have raised more than two thirds of the £3,000 needed to help Igor Gieci get back on his feet.
A campaign to help the 55-year-old homeless man was launched after he was seriously hurt in an unprovoked, prolonged, and brutal attack in the early hours of Monday – as he slept in a tent on Blackpool’s Promenade.
READ MORE:: Homeless man 'pleaded with thugs to stop' as they battered him in early hours attack in Blackpool
The Slovakian, who has been homeless for between six and eight months and does not qualify for housing benefit, is set to move into a flat in central Blackpool tomorrow using the cash already raised.
The rest, campaigners hope, will pay for a six-month tenancy and furnishings – while employers have been urged to come forward too.
READ MORE:: Homeless man 'pleaded with thugs to stop' as they battered
By this morning, £2,046 had been given by 177 people – with donations still coming in regularly. They can be made here.
Resort homeless campaigner Mark Butcher, who has been helping Mr Gieci throughout the week, said: “I’m really proud of the people of Blackpool. It’s been quite incredible to see such an amazing response from locals – from working and genuine people.”
Mr Gieci has been flooded with offers of help, and has been given food, furniture, medicine, glasses, and a hair cut. He has been staying at a holiday flat for free since the assault.
READ MORE:: Campaigner's pride in Blackpool as well-wishers raise cash to pay for flat for brutally attacked homeless man
He said he was attacked at around 2am by three boys, aged around 17 to 18, who demanded money before jumping on him “like a trampoline”. They also ripped and discarded his tent and, Mr Gieci said, stole a basic mobile phone he fears they threw in the Irish Sea.
“In the short term we want to get his health back,” Mr Butcher said. “But the mid-term plan is get him back to work because that’s the only way he can sustain himself.”
Det Con Adam Weaver, from Blackpool CID, said: “This was a brutal and sustained assault on a vulnerable man and I would appeal to any witnesses or anyone with information to come forward and speak to us.”
Anyone with information can call police on 101, quoting log number 0635 of October 1, 2018. It can also be reported anonymously to the charity Crimestoppers by calling 0800 555 111.