CIARA Kelleher, 19, from Bury, Manchester will be doing a tandem sky dive in April 2017 in order to raise money for the homeless in Manchester.
With a target of £600 she has a long way to go in raising the funds but hopes to make a difference and encourage others to help the disadvantaged community.
A JustGiving page has been set up ready to accept donations of any amount with Kelleher raising money for the charity Barnabus.
The organisation provides life changing opportunities to those in need in and around Manchester.
Statistics show that there has been a 900 per cent increase in the ‘Rough Sleeping Rate’ across the city just over the last five years.
Following 25-years experience and an ‘Unsung Heroes’ Queens’ award for Voluntary Service, Barnabus now offer a lifeline to over 600 visiting people each week.
Kelleher admitted that witnessing the levels of homelessness on a daily basis impacted her decision to choose the charity.
“I find it really hard to turn a blind eye,” she admitted.
“I had my heart set on raising money for a homeless charity that was specifically meant to help the people in the city where I live and grew up.
“They do amazing work to change peoples lives.”
The homeless community are typically filled with citizens across the financial spectrum at one stage in time.
Donations, Kelleher hopes, can prevent the problem from spiralling out of control.
She said: “In reality a lot of people who end up homeless come from really well educated, successful background where something tragic may have happened to them that led their life to spiral out of control.
If you look at it that way, they are no different to us and we should all try and do something to help them turn their lives around and get them back into mainstream society.
“Due to government welfare cuts the amount of homeless people living in Manchester gets drastically worse each year.
“We’re all so focused on our own lives it’s easy to say that we’re too busy… but if everyone in Manchester donated just £1 then the impact it would have in terms of eradicating this tragic issue would be incredible.”
Funds are raised continually through a variety of methods but a skydive is certainly among the most adventurous with the adrenaline undoubtedly pumping thousands of feet in the air.
“I chose to do a sky dive because it captures people’s attention and I hope that, because it’s quite a scary challenge, it would gain a greater amount of support,” she revealed.
“Luckily, it isn’t until April 2017 so I have time to bury my head in the sand and not think about the actual immensity of it but I’m pretty terrified.”
By Cait Navan