CRASH: The Upper Room
The Upper Room is a front-line homelessness charity based in west London which began life as a soup kitchen in 1990. The charity supports immediate needs of homeless people by offering food as the first point of contact before providing access to employability projects and a broad range of referrals to other specialist organisations. The Story of Christmas is fundraising to cover the majority of the costs of a major redevelopment project at the centre, which will transform The Upper Room’s existing workspace to provide an entire additional mezzanine floor. This will afford the charity one-to-one rooms for confidential casework and counseling, a training room, storage space for donated goods (such as clothes and food for the rough-sleepers) and an open plan office space for staff and volunteers.
Haven House Children’s Hospice
Haven House Children’s Hospice provides specialist care for children and young people, from birth to the age of 19, who are unlikely to reach adulthood. The hospice also provides a range of support services to families, including day, short-break and end-of-life care. At any one time, around 300 families are supported by the hospice and a new annexe is now needed. As part of the new development programme, The Story of Christmas is fundraising to meet the costs of a major renovation project at the hospice, involving a new coffee lounge area for families to meet for mutual support and a new purpose-built play and activity area for the children, complete with friendly soft play surfaces and interactive equipment.
Prospex: The Breathe Minibus
Prospex is a local youth focused charity working in Islington helping children and young people aged 8-21 – who are disadvantaged through poverty – tackle social issues using positive relationships, soft skills development and transitional training to broaden their horizons and lift their ambitions. The Story of Christmas is fundraising to buy a new mini-bus for the charity. The Breathe mini bus will allow Prospex to regularly take young people out from the claustrophobic confines of the estates and out into the countryside to experience new landscapes and challenges which help change their outlook on life. In addition the mini bus will be serviced and maintained by young people as part of their effective MechaniX project.
St Mungo’s: Lodge II
Lodge II is an exciting new project opening in 2017, developed in partnership between St Mungo’s and the City of London. It will support 17 homeless people, providing high quality accommodation and innovative support, rather than traditional keyworking. Many residents at Lodge II will have lived on the streets for years. Lodge II will offer long-term support for people whose age or health needs mean they cannot live independently. For many residents Lodge II will be their first home for many years. The Story of Christmas is fundraising to finance the new lounge and reception area at the centre, creating a special space for residents and guests to enjoy their free time.
XLP works to create positive futures for young people living in inner London and make a serious and sustainable impact on poverty and educational failure. Many disadvantaged young people struggle with one or more of the following: poor home life; educational underachievement and/or exclusion; challenging behavioural characteristics; poor life choices; and involvement in gang-related anti-social behaviour. The Story of Christmas bought a new coach for the charity though the 2014 Appeal. This year, The Story of Christmas is fundraising for the purchase and conversion of a new X-Mobile recording studio van for XLP’s X-Mobile Project. This project uses a mobile recording studio to provide support 1-2-1 or in small groups to young people, in schools, PRU’s and on the estates where they live. The charity’s existing van is nearing the end of its life and needs replacing. Over two thirds of those who engage with the project come from very disadvantaged backgrounds and are involved with gangs, crime and anti-social behaviour. Specialist youth workers encourage young people to express the struggles they face through music and develop trusted relationships so that they can address their behavioural, educational and emotional challenges.