We talk to Stevenage and Hitchin drop-in Feed Up Warm Up about its first year of helping the homeless
PUBLISHED: 15:01 30 January 2020 | UPDATED: 15:06 30 January 2020
Since setting up its homeless drop-in in December 2018, Feed Up Warm Up has gone from strength to strength, having most recently acquired a second outreach van, celebrated its first birthday, and become a registered charity.
Feed Up Warm Up provides a drop-in centre for the homeless in Hitchin and Stevenage each week, and has attracted many volunteers since its inception by founder Shane Cole.
The Stevenage drop-in - held at the Church of St Andrew and St George every Tuesday - sees in excess of 50 clients some weeks, and provides them with hot food, food parcels, clean clothes, toiletries and more.
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The charity celebrated its first birthday in December - and over the course of its first year the project went from a scheme to see those in need through the tough winter months, to a fully-fledged charity.
The team of volunteers have raised money for an outreach van, to reach those who are out on the streets, and have recently been gifted a second minibus by the Apostolic Faith Mission in Stevenage - which will enable the teams to go out on outreach together, or to drop off or pick up clients.
Shane said: "The last six months have been ridiculously busy.
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"We've become an official charity and we're in the process of setting up a Virgin Money Giving page.
"The Apostolic Faith Mission Stevenage also gave us their minibus - named Hope following a Facebook poll - to make a difference to our clients.
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"We can start using it to get our clients and volunteers around, along with Grace, our outreach van."
Feed Up Warm Up has not been short of support from the community since it started.
Support for them continues to grow now it's become a registered charity.
READ MORE: How Stevenage and Hitchin drop-ins for the homeless have created family bonds
Most recently, new Stevenage restaurant Lavish Bar and Grill - based in High Street - has partnered up with the drop-in service, and will supply hot food for clients on a monthly basis.
Volunteers will also take part in a charity football match with Hitchin and Letchworth-based team, Football for Fathers, on Saturday, February 29.
To find out more about Feed Up Warm Up, search for them on Facebook or go to feedupwarmup.co.uk.