On Tuesday, 12th December, six colleagues spent the morning volunteering their time at The Booth Centre, a day centre in Manchester offering advice, activities and support to the homeless community. The Centre has been open for 20 years and receives over 80 visitors each day with numbers expected to increase as cases of homelessness have soared by more than 30% in the last 12 months.
The Booth Centre offers services such as medical care, training courses, help to find work and accommodation, drug and alcohol addiction counselling and hot meals for breakfast and lunch. However, most importantly, is the warm and welcoming environment it offers to service users who told the team they come to the Centre not just because of the excellent services it offers, but because they feel safe there.
The team spent the morning involved with different aspects of the Centre’s work, including cooking in the kitchen, sorting and storing donations from the community and joining the Music Club – where they listened to local music groups and service users played instruments. They found a lot of musical talent in the room!
The experience for the team was both overwhelming but also incredibly interesting. Service users were more than happy to engage and tell their stories and also how much the volunteers at The Booth Centre had helped them. Amanda Croome, the CEO of The Booth Centre, reported that the Centre had helped 120 people gain employment in the last 12 months and 93 had been able to gain nationally recognised qualifications.
It was a truly eye-opening and enjoyable morning and the team is looking forward to helping the Centre even more in the future. Another team of volunteers, including Regional Manager Paul Hitchen, will attend another volunteering morning on Monday, 22nd January 2018.
RMG is currently running a donation drive, collecting food donations, hats, socks and gloves which will be delivered to the centre in time for Christmas. If you would like to learn more about the work done by the Booth Centre or would like more information on how you could get involved and donate, visit their website:
Look out for an update on our food drive for the centre!