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Stonebridge charity launches campaign to help homeless this winter

PUBLISHED: 12:06 06 December 2017 | UPDATED: 12:06 06 December 2017

Khalil, from Afghanistan is part of Sufra NW London's Winter Appeal to help the homeless

Khalil, from Afghanistan is part of Sufra NW London's Winter Appeal to help the homeless

Archant

A foodbank charity in Stonebridge has launched a campaign to keep homeless people out of the cold this winter.

Rough sleeper on a freezing November night in Gladstone Park (Picture: Steve Roberts)Rough sleeper on a freezing November night in Gladstone Park (Picture: Steve Roberts)

Sufra Food Bank & Kitchen NW London, in Pitfield Way, has launched its #WinterAppeal which aims to raise £10,000 to help people in need.

The campaign focuses on a refugee named Khalil, who came to the UK three years ago from Afghanistan.

For the past few weeks the 19-year-old has been sleeping on a bench in a park near Sufra’s headquarters after he was evicted from his home and left to fend for himself.

Mohammed Mamdani, director of Sufra NW London, said the charity is currently trying to find permanent accommodation for Khalil.

He added: “We launched our Winter Appeal last week to help us raise £10,000 to help us continue providing emergency support to those who are vulnerable, including young boys like Khalil.

“Our aim is to provide clothing, food, emergency accommodation and support for winter fuel payments for the homeless and poor.

“We will be open throughout the festive period providing weekly hot meals, regular food bank services, as well as free Christmas presents and dinner on Christmas Day.”

As the weather turns colder, members of the community have highlighted the desperate lives of homeless people on social media.

Dozens of neighbours responded to a post by Steve Roberts, who uploaded a picture of a person sleeping rough in Gladstone Park on November 30 to the Facebook group View From Dollis Hill.

He called Ashford Place, the homeless support charity based in Cricklewood, and discovered it no longer runs its outreach programme, which was taken over by St Mungo’s Broadway, in Pound Lane, in 2015.

Lucien Lawrence, Ashford’s assessment centre co-ordinator, said: “Although we provide housing services for rough sleepers including temporary and supported accommodation, we have not provided the rough sleeping outreach service since 2015, with St Mungos. in Pound Lane, taking over the contract for carrying out this task.”

He advised that if people see a rough sleeper contact streetlink, the rough sleeping referral service, on 0300 500 0914,

To help Sufra visit: Virginmoneygiving.com/fund/winter

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