AT OUR last Open Day we had about ten agency stands and over 70 visitors, including one vicar who brought a £177 donation from his congregation.
Among the agencies represented were Lighthouse Christian Counselling, Valley House (for victims of domestic violence) and Dental Health Services, who give us free toothbrushes and toothpaste.
Soon after, an organisation 'Volunteer in Coventry' asked if three city councillors could visit us. We agreed. Two weeks later the Coventry Evening Telegraph published an article on the Centre. Since then we have been inundated with hundreds of pounds worth of toiletries, food, blankets and clothes from the general public - interesting because we had relied on appeals to other churches before. Last year we gave out 1,400 lots of clothing.
Recently we conducted the second round of a rough sleepers homelessness survey for the Council’s Homelessness Strategy Unit. We counted 45 - 10 times more than other sources had previously suggested.
Meeting people’s needs are at the centre of it all. One e-mail we received read like this “Greetings, my name is Tony and I’m from Kenya. Last year I visited your centre regularly. I was desperate at that time, but you offered me food and drink, clothing and advice. I am very grateful. I hope that many more people will benefit from your good mission.”