Derwent Living secures £5,000 for local charity

Local charity Doorways Derby, who provide help to homeless and vulnerable people, has received a £5,000 grant from housing provider Derwent Living. The funding has been secured from Places for People social impact charity Places Foundation, who provide financial support to initiatives which improve the quality of life for people and communities. The grant, will be used to cover running costs, the purchasing of sleeping bags and supplies and will help to finance the running costs of a new vehicle – essential in providing a mobile street kitchen service.

Doorways Derby, which was started in 2015 by just a few volunteers, has grown steadily and now provides outreach services to around 120 vulnerable people in the city three nights a week. Working alongside other businesses and care providers, the charity provides a vital safety net and signposting service for rough sleepers and vulnerable people unable to afford basic food and shelter.

Derwent Living has previously supported the charity with clothing donations, food collections and staff volunteers, but the grant – one of the largest the organisation has ever secured – adds vital financial stability to the charity.

Craig Wheatley from Doorways Derby said: “This grant will enable Doorways to continue to move forward and support the visitors that use our services. The money will be used to cover the running costs and general upkeep of both vans and to purchase cups, foils, forks, napkins and for public liability cover.

“As a non-profit making organisation this has taken a great deal of pressure off myself and other trustees knowing that the most important costs are covered and we will be able to keep supporting our service users. Without the support of Derwent Living, Places Foundation and other local businesses as well as our amazing volunteers we wouldn’t be able to achieve what we do.

Peter McCormack, chief executive at Derwent Living said: “From immediate help through the street kitchens to life changing assistance by sign posting, Doorways Derby provides a true lifeline to people on the streets. We hope this donation will have a significant impact, enabling the charity to grow and continue to support the most vulnerable people in our community.

“Organisations, local authorities and specialist care providers all need to continue to work together to help provide the next step for people who use the vital services provided by organisations like Doorways Derby. Only by working together can we tackle the underlying issues and change things for the better for rough sleepers and vulnerable people.”

Group head of social value at Places Foundation, Jamie Dickinson said: “Homelessness is a growing challenge across the UK with over 300,000 homeless people living on the streets, in temporary accommodation or ‘sofa surfing’ with family and friends.

“Last year the Places for People Group helped over 5,300 homeless people, so it’s great that the Places Foundation can continue to contribute and support work with Derwent Living and Doorways Derby. This funding is going to make a huge difference to some of the most vulnerable people in Derby and we look forward to developing this partnership further in the future.”