Warwickshire homeless charity launch fundraising page to save vital service

The Helping Hands Team, pictured outside their present premises, at Stoneleigh Park.  They have to move from them soon and are now looking for an alternative site, to operate the charity from and store the furniture they provide to people in need. NNL-170703-215758009
The Helping Hands Team, pictured outside their present premises, at Stoneleigh Park. They have to move from them soon and are now looking for an alternative site, to operate the charity from and store the furniture they provide to people in need. NNL-170703-215758009

A charity that helps the district’s homeless has launched a fundraising page to try and raise money for a new storage space.

Helping Hands, who are based in Leamington, launched an appeal earlier this month to try and find a new home for their ‘House2Home’ service.

The charity, which also provides a soup kitchen and skills training for those in need, helps vulnerable people who have moved into a new home with their ‘House2Home’ service.

The service provides household items that the tenants could not afford to buy themselves.

Helping Hands currently has a two-storey building at Stoneleigh Park, which it uses to store all of the household donations it receives.

The service originally started in 2013 in people’s garages and then moved to a hut on Warwick Racecourse but this was demolished two years ago, and the charity then moved to the business park.

The charity will soon have to leave the space they were gifted at Stoneleigh Park, and so launched an appeal to try and find another space.

Lianne Kirkman, Helping Hands manager, said: “We have had the unit gifted to us by Stoneleigh Park for a couple of years now and they have been amazing and we have been able to continue our work and grow it.

“Since November we have had 120 referrals made to us from local children’s centres, social services, family support groups, housing departments and so on asking us for help.

“We always knew it was going to be a temporary thing and we were told just before Christmas that the unit we use has been picked by a business. We were told that there were other options to move into another unit but we got the news that the one we were hoping to move into is going to be knocked down.”

“I would like to say thank you to Stoneleigh Park and to Colin Hooper, the estates manager, for letting us use that site for free and to just pay the electric bills. It has been a lifeline for us but it has come to an end.”

Despite appealing for another space, the charity has not yet found somewhere that would be suitable so they have decided to launch a fundraising page.

The charity is aiming to raise £10,000 so they can cover the costs of leasing a new space for a year.

Lianne said: “We’ve been so lucky having Stoneleigh Park letting us use their building for free but we’ve now started looking at rentals as I’m not sure if anyone will gift us a building again sadly.”

If the charity cannot find somewhere to relocate to or raise enough money, they may have to stop their ‘House2Home’ service.

So far people have donated £300 to the charity’s Just Giving page.

To donate to Helping Hands click here