Housing and homeless charity Shelter is appealing to the public to help fund its free helpline after they’ve seen a 9 per cent increase in its amount of calls in the last 12 months.

With the deepening housing crisis in the North West, Shelter have been receiving a call to their helpline every five and a half minutes.

Recent analysis by the charity revealed that nearly 1,700 children in the North West will wake up homeless on Christmas morning – the highest level recorded since 2008. That’s why Shelter is calling on the public to help support its frontline advisers meet the demand.

This year Marks & Spencers are donating 5 per cent of every sale of their ‘food on the move’ festive range to the helpline which will fund one in five of the calls it answers.


Nadeem Khan, a helpline adviser for Shelter, said:  “Every day at Shelter we speak to people faced with losing their home but when a parent calls us, desperate to keep a roof over their child’s head, nothing is more heart-breaking.

Our team of expert advisers work 365 days a year to make sure that no-one has to fight bad housing or homelessness on their own. If it wasn’t for the money raised by M&S customers, thousands of calls for help from people in the North West would go unanswered.’’

Mike Barry, Director of Plan A at M&S, said: “This year marks Shelter’s 50th anniversary, but the surge in calls to the helpline, makes it clear that Shelter is as needed now as at any time in its long history. And that’s exactly why our partnership with the charity remains hugely important to M&S and to our customers.”

Since the partnership began in 2005, the money raised has helped thousands of families to find and keep a home. Buying a festive lunch from M&S is an easy way to support Shelter this Christmas and will make a real difference to struggling families across the country.

Shelter helps 4 million people a year fight bad housing and homelessness. For free and independent advice from Shelter visit here or call the helpline on 0808 800 4444.

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