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Asda has donated £300 towards the cost of Surviving the Streets' Christmas event.

Asda has donated £300 towards the cost of Surviving the Streets’ Christmas event. James Robinson, left, and brother Peter received the cheque from the store manager.

Surviving the Streets to provide Christmas cheer at the Y Centre

The Y Centre will be open over Christmas as local charity Surviving the Streets provides seasonal cheer for the homeless, the lonely, the elderly and anyone unable to provide for themselves. Nick Terdre reports.

Christmas Day will see the Y Centre in St Paul’s Road throwing open its doors between 11am and 5pm, with around 100 guests expected, James Robinson, who founded Surviving the Streets with his brother Peter, told HOT.

All who would otherwise face a hungry, miserable or lonely Christmas are welcome. On offer will be a hot meal, with all kinds of meat, as well as services such as a clothing store and haircuts, and, if it can be arrranged, showers. There will be games to play and friendly souls to talk to. On Boxing Day the centre will be open from 10am to 1pm.

The group has received a grant of £300 towards the cost of the event from the Asda supermarket in Silverhill. It is supported financially by a couple of sponsors, while the Robinsons themselves are used to dipping into their own pockets.

The brothers started Surviving the Streets in August last year in response to the growing problems of homelessness and poverty in East Sussex. They are active all the year round, providing hot meals, sleeping bags, advice and a friend to talk to for those who find themselves on the street or without the means to adequately feed and clothe themselves.

Zero food waste

Cutting out food waste is another part of their philosophy. Their supplies come in the form of food that would otherwise be thrown away from supermarkets such as Tesco, Waitrose (in Eastbourne), the Coop, Asda and other outlets including Esso.

Any food left over is delivered to centres for children and vulnerable adults, says James – none is wasted.

Hastings is one of Surviving the Streets’ main centres of activity, with distribution of meals and goods every Wednesday and Friday. Saturday is the turn of Bexhill and Sunday Eastbourne. The group, which counts on the help of some 270 volunteers, is also active in Hailsham.

At a rough guess there are about 100 rough sleepers in Hastings, James says, while the overall number of homeless, inadequately housed and sofa surfers is probably 200. The number of rough sleepers in Eastbourne is about the same as Hastings.

Donations can be made to Surviving the Streets through its website and Facebook page. There are bins for food donations in the Asda’s Silverhill store and at the Y-Centre.

surv the streets poster

Posted 05:28 Thursday, Dec 13, 2018 In: Grassroots

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