This article is part of our Christmas appeal. You can donate here.
December, for many people, is a time for looking back. With the help of end of year reviews and celebrity quizzes, we’re encouraged to think about everything that’s happened since ringing in the new year. But for Christians, the arrival of December also means the beginning of Advent: a time of looking forward in expectancy and hope.
2017 hasn’t been an easy year for homeless people. The housing crisis has meant more and more people finding themselves without a home, while cuts and other issues with welfare have meant that an increasing number of people have had to rely on food banks in order to feed themselves and their families.
Looking forward, it doesn’t appear that things are going to get better. In fact, things are expected to become worse: a recent report from Crisis suggested that the number of homeless people in Britain will double by 2041 unless the government takes urgent action.
Yet in the face of these depressing predictions, we are called to be hopeful – to look for the light that shines in the darkness. And we're called to share that hope, that light, with other people; particularly with those who are vulnerable and on the margins of society.
Hope can come in many forms. It can come as a hot meal, or a warm, safe bed to sleep in. It can be a food parcel when all other options have run out. It can be a helping hand in starting a new life.
That’s why we’re asking for your help. Your donation, big or small, could give someone hope this Christmas.
Crisis Centre Ministries is an award-winning charity that has been working in Bristol for over 30 years. It supports the most vulnerable and marginalised in society towards healthy and independent lives, through four projects:
The Wild Goose Drop-In Centre is open four days and six evenings a week where service users can receive free hot food, practical support, clothing and signposting to appropriate social and voluntary services.
The Spring of Hope Women's Night Shelter provides temporary safe and warm accommodation as well as further support to women suffering from abuse, relationship breakdown, homelessness or complex needs.
The LIFE course helps service users in addiction recovery develop practical life skills.
The East Bristol Foodbank provides short-term emergency food provision to those in extreme need.