Big businesses join charities to help Sheffield’s homeless

John Lewis, Virgin Money and McDonald’s have joined a local campaign to help vulnerable people on Sheffield’s streets, supported by 20 different organisations.

As part of the Help Us Help Christmas campaign, staff from the organisations will be at the Christmas market in the city centre, providing information about how the public can help the cause.

Volunteers from the businesses are joining local charities and Sheffield City Council, asking people to donate canned food, gloves, hats, scarves and toiletries to charities that help rough sleepers and people who beg.

The Sheffield City Centre Retail Forum says homelessness and begging is one of the subjects often raised as part of its monthly meetings. It says retailers and customers come across people who need support most mornings, but they are often not sure how they can help.

The campaign says the best ways to help are to:

  1. Give time or donations to charity, rather than directly to someone who begs.
  2. Give food or drink rather than money.
  3. Have a chat with someone and encourage them to access support services.
  4. Buy a Big Issue North as vendors are working, not begging, and need public support.

The Help Us Help stall will run from the 30 November until the 6 December at the Christmas market, in front of the Peace Gardens.

Age UK have also launched an appeal to help the elderly with their heating costs this winter, read more.