Harrow Winter Night Shelter

In the first three months of the year, when the weather is at its coldest, an organisation called Firm Foundation has provided warmth, companionship, and food to Harrow’s homeless. This is the Harrow Winter Night Shelter initiative, and St Mary’s have been helping with it since the start, five years ago.

Firm Foundation Logo

Firm Foundation’s website

This winter is no exception. We’re calling for volunteers to do two jobs: catering and befriending. The commitment can be as little as a couple of hours of your time on one convenient evening. It can be more, but you decide exactly how much you feel comfortable with.

This posting explains a little about what’s involved. Contact John & Jean Norman (details below) to find out more!

The Winter Night Shelter will be operating from 6th January to 31st March 2014. The location for our work will be the Weldon Centre, behind Trinity Church, Hindes Road.

If you’re helping with the befriending, then the job is to arrive at 6:30pm to help set up tables and chairs. The guests arrive from 7pm onwards, and are welcomed and chatted to (if they wish) until the start of dinner at 8pm. Then we help to serve the meal, and join in the conversation. At the end, we help to tidy up, ready for the night shift to take over at 9pm. And that’s it. This year, Firm Foundation want to schedule between 2 and 4 befrienders every evening. John & Jean will be coordinating the schedule for the St Mary’s volunteers.

If you haven’t done this before, don’t worry. You’ll be given a full briefing, and a checklist of things to do.

If you’re helping with the catering, then we’ll plan ahead of time who wants to cook what. There are up to 15 guests each evening, so we need to cater for up to 20 people including helpers. We provide a choice of main courses and puddings.

You bring what you’ve cooked to the Weldon Centre, where it can be heated up if necessary, in time for it to be served at 8pm.

We have three dates for providing the catering:

Friday 17th January
Friday 7th February
Friday 7th March

We may be adding some Sunday dates to this as well, and we’ll circulate those dates to anyone who’s interested.

Keen to help?

Please contact John or Jean Norman in the first instance.

Email “stmaryspcc@yahoo.co.uk” or use the contact form below.

Please don’t use the church office email for this, especially as we’re shorthanded at the moment!

Or phone John and Jean on 020 8422 2337

We look forward to hearing from you, and for Team St Mary’s to make a bigger contribution than ever this year!


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