Loaves and Fishes, Salford

Salford charity Loaves and Fishes have introduced a new Christmas campaign to gift a Christmas dinner to homeless people in the city.

“Gift a Christmas Dinner’ the charity, who help homeless people find a better way of life, aim to bounce back after Covid-19 cancelled the 2020 event.

The campaign asks people to donate £5 which will give people a warm meal and a gift to open on Christmas Day.

Local churches help the charity collect toys and gifts that they can give out through the period with CEO Jonathan Billings specifically thanking Morrisons in Eccles who regularly donate to them.

Jonathan described this as their biggest campaign of the year. The aim is “to provide vulnerable and needy people with a Christmas dinner.

“We’re really trying to make Christmas here extra nice this year with us not being able to open and being in the lockdown.

“Just seeing the impact that it had on people who were already needy and vulnerable was devastating, so we’re just trying to go all out this year and make Christmas as nice as possible.”

Last year, due to Covid-19, Salford Loaves and Fishes could only give food boxes out to visitors, many of whom had to spend the festive season alone, with no family.

Jonathan added: “It’s just very difficult for people last year having to isolate or people who in the lockdown lived in tower blocks, hostels or other accommodation some people don’t even have gardens to fit in, so are trapped inside a flat throughout the lockdown had a very negative impact on people’s mental health.”

On the day, they have a choir performing and various activities they can all join in on – and of course, Christmas dinner prepared by an army of volunteers who help and join in.

For people thinking of donating Jonathan asks them to “think of the good that it’s doing to provide someone in need with a festive meal as well as the other benefits it can bring.

“Yes, they’re getting a Christmas dinner, but they’re also getting support and help from our staff. They’re building that relationship with the staff who in the future can support them and address any issues they may have.”

You can donate £5 to ‘Gift a Christmas Dinner’ through their various social media platforms, where you can also find useful information on their campaign and their plans for the day. Alternatively, to donate you can donate here



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