"The support shown by fans through the Foundation has been nothing short of incredible"
Tue 10th October 2017
Graham Steven is Partnerships & Communication Manager at Glasgow City Mission, one of the Foundation’s charity partners which will benefit from the Big Ibrox Sleepouts this season. He is writing for us on World Homelessness Day (October 10) to explain the difference supporters are making to help homeless people in Glasgow.
Homelessness is an issue that confronts us all. We only need to take a walk along Argyle Street or Sauchiehall Street to the sight of too many people sleeping rough or begging for money. And yet these people are only the visible tip of a large iceberg.
Last year, 5,337 homeless applications were made to Glasgow City Council. Where these applications have been successful, people are given a bed in a homeless hostel, temporary furnished flat, B&B or some other form of temporary accommodation.
The reasons behind someone becoming homeless are complex and the solutions to move forwards even more so.
Glasgow City Mission exists to provide practical care to those affected by homelessness, poverty and isolation:
- Our City Centre project seeks to meet people’s immediate needs like food and a safe, warm place to come for help, but crucially, also to tackle the underlying causes and provide a way forward. Our City Centre project has almost 30 different services designed to build people’s confidence, self-esteem and skills.
- We’re the lead partner in delivering the Glasgow Winter Night Shelter – an emergency accommodation service for rough sleepers for the coldest months of winter.
- And our Child & Family Centre just along the road in Govan seeks to break the poverty cycle by giving kids in the community the best start in life through our nursery, playgroups and parenting support workshops.
All of our work is funded by our amazing supporters: individuals, churches, workplaces, schools and charitable trusts and foundations. Its lots of people playing their part to make a big difference.
Glasgow City Mission has been thrilled to partner with Rangers Charity Foundation for now three seasons. The support shown by fans through the Foundation has been nothing short of incredible and has exceeded all expectations.
- In Season 2015/16, the Foundation set out to raise £25,000 to keep the Glasgow Winter Night Shelter open for an extra month to meet demand. Previously the shelter would be open from December until the end of February but funding from Rangers would keep the lifeline service open for a further month when temperatures were still below freezing. By sleeping out at Ibrox, not only did fans smash the £25,000 target, but they did so in style, raising £70,000 – enough for an extra month for March 2016, 2017 and most of 2018! Money was also used to provide legal help for people to ensure they got the statutory accommodation they were entitled to.
- In Season 2016/17, the Foundation sought to build on its partnership with Glasgow City Mission by directing fundraising efforts towards our City Centre project’s evening drop-in service – a key service where more than 100 homeless and vulnerable people access food, social company and advice each weekday evening. An incredible £17,000 was raised – enough to fund 17,000 hot and nourishing meals.
- This season, the Foundation is helping to decorate and furnish new homes that Glasgow City Mission has purchased for some of our most disadvantaged clients. It’s a hugely exciting initiative and one we hope will end the cycle of homelessness and chaos. We’re thrilled to be working with the Foundation this season to help us make houses more like homes.
In addition to significant sums of money raised, Rangers Charity Foundation has also helped us in various other ways including raising our profile through significant media coverage, donating sleeping bags, creating a Christmas Appeal video for us and sending players and the club’s manager to visit our projects much to the delight of our clients.
The support shown by the Foundation and all connected with the Club has been second to none and enabled a significant difference in the fight against homelessness in Glasgow. On behalf of us all at Glasgow City Mission, we can’t thank you enough and look forward to another great season ahead.
Find out more about Glasgow City Mission by visiting its website www.glasgowcitymission.com.