Bag of hope for homeless

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Charity workers aiming to give homeless people some comfort over Christmas have been left high and dry with just over a week until the big day.

Volunteers for the Rucksack Project want to provide 100 people sleeping rough on the Fylde coast with a bag containing some home comforts.

But so far, only 30 rucksacks have been completely filled and the group still needs donations.

The project is also planning a three course Christmas dinner for the destitute.

But, with just a fortnight to go, they were told their chosen venue was unavailable.

Organiser Joshua Witney said: “We need a venue in Blackpool with kitchen facilities that we can use on Christmas day that will seat between 50-100 people.

“We were let down at the last minute and now really need somewhere we can provide a festive meal for homeless people.

“We have approached the fire service about using one of their premises but would have had to carry out a full risk 
assessment, and we do not have the time or resources to do that.”

Items to fill the rucksacks to be handed out by volunteers can be donated at Dream Queens Community Shop, at 177 Dickson Road, Blackpool.

The project will also collect in the Blackpool area.

The rucksacks will be handed out next Monday at the Dickson Road Methodist Church soup kitchen.

Items still needed include rucksacks or holdalls, sleeping bags, flasks, socks and underwear, fleeces or jumpers, gloves, hats and scarves, tins of soup with ringpulls and spoons.

Mr Witney said: “We have a target of 100 rucksacks but only have about 30 at present so we are desperate for help.

“We need help with the essentials but any extras are most welcome like toothbrushes, toothpaste and toiletries.

“Some homeless people are female too and we need ladies clothing and toiletries too.

“We can except individual items too it doesn’t have to be a complete made up rucksack.”

Anyone who can help with donations or can provide a Christmas dinner venue at short notice should contact Josh on 07506 569411 or Leanne on 07732 205703.