Lending a helping a hand for the day

At Montage, we are currently working with Trinity, a fantastic charity on a mission to end homelessness. Trinity, who are based in Hillingdon, work closely with SHOC, a like minded charity in Slough who are there to support those in need of accommodation and support. This week, John and Nicole were honoured to visit SHOC and help them run their day centre. Their responsibilities for the day included offering refreshments, serving food and getting to know the people who rely on the centre. The day centre itself is a very warm, welcoming and friendly place with a sense of personality running through it. Many clients were very chatty, often sharing a laugh with one another which was lovely to see. The day centre is a place where they all can chat about situations they are facing and support each other. There is also a washing machine and tumble dryer on site for the clients to wash their clothes. There are clothes available if anyone has a requirement. Shower facilitates are also on site for clients to use if they so wish. The shower is run on a rota of around 10 shower slots a day. The centre is there to help clients with anything they may need. Business branding strategist London

During the day, John and Nicole helped out in different ways at the centre. John was able to act as a support to SHOC’s clients, talking to them and allowing them to share their stories with him. The centre is a safe haven, a place to not only be fed, but a place where they can unload their issues, talk through their situation on their own terms with people who care, and more importantly, allows them to escape from their routines for a while.  Nicole spent the most of her day in the kitchen, preparing meals and refreshments, cleaning up, and serving the clients food. The food that is served is based on donations that are received, meaning some days they have to be more creative with meals preparation. Nicole was also introduced to the various people who are dependent on the centre. The clients were lovely, respectful people who were very thankful towards those who run the centre and lend a hand. While the majority of those using the centre were without homes, there was a handful that did have shelter, but were unable to afford to feed their selves. That day, around 50 clients were served lunch.

It goes without saying that the staff at the day centre work wonders! They are definitely have to be tough in order to deal with the various situations which could easily arise, however they are all incredibly approachable and go above and beyond to ensure their clients are on track for a better life. On the day, John and Nicole witnessed the staff helping their clients seek medical advice and the even went through how to use their medication properly. Staff also lend a hand in helping clients with various paperwork regarding employment. The staff are mostly volunteers, who are often working shift patterns in their full time jobs between helping the centre. Returning to their normal routine, John and Nicole reflected on how different people’s lives can be, living in the 5th largest economy in the world, people still don’t have equality with their living standards. Creative brand strategist London

They couldn’t help but think about where those people went later that day. That’s why now more than ever, Montage are really encouraging people to help support their local charities. Charity really does begin and home, and homeless shelters would really benefit from any items you are able to donate. When John and Nicole were asked ‘what is the one thing they would take away from their experience?’ it would be that the smallest of gestures could really make a huge difference to those who need it.

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