Chiswick Adventist Church Drop-in Service for the Homeless
14th February 2019
Many of us have seen the plight of the homeless on the streets of London, as reported in the news and on social media.
The report from the Bureau of Investigative Journalism in October 2018 shows that in 2017, 449 people died homeless in the UK, more than one a day, and the death toll is likely to be significantly higher.
It's against this background that the Community Services team at Chiswick Seventh-day Adventist church, decided to start a 'Drop-in Service' for the homeless. The aim of our service is to provide a shower service to assist our guests in maintaining their personal hygiene and to provide a place where they can rest and relax for a while. In addition to having a shower, guests would be able to receive clean clothes, have a hot meal and take food and toiletries away.
Because of the support we have received, we were able to launch our project on 3 February 2019. The Mayor of Hounslow, Councillor Samia Chaudhary, was present to officially open our Drop-in Service. (The shower service runs every Sunday from 2 pm - 4 pm). On the day, 4 guests arrived. We provided a hot meal, clean clothes, toiletries and food to take away with them together with warm friendship. They even requested to watch TV, so we put on sports for them to watch on a large screen. They enjoyed their time with us and said they look forward to attending on a weekly basis. They also said that they would be inviting their friends as well.
Therefore, on behalf of the Community Service team, we would like to express our gratitude to Norman Chingwaru from the Olive Branch charity for his involvement and commitment in helping us to get our project on a legal footing.
Our heartfelt thanks go to Heerum Fleary, from the Southall Adventist church, for her willingness to assist us beyond her comfort zone.
We express our thanks to Sarah Lubanga and Bea Jackson, from Area 6D for their interest and kind support.
Last, but not least, we cannot thank the members of our church enough for the interest they have shown and the willingness they have expressed to support us with the project.
As a team, when we look back at where we were when we first started and where we are now, we can see God leading us and we continue to rely on His strength. We are responsible for our effort but not the outcome.
If you would like to be a volunteer, please contact me: Marcia Silvera, email@example.com. As the majority of our guests are male, we are appealing for male volunteers to come and assist.
Please pray for us as we witness to those less fortunate.
[Marcia Silvera, Community Services Leader, Chiswick Adventist Church ]