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A fundraising campaign set up by Hillcrest Futures has raised £771 to help keep vulnerable people in Dundee and Perth warm and safe during the harsh winter months.
The online campaign, launched in December last year, urged people and companies to ditch Christmas cards and instead use their money for a more charitable cause.
The funds have been used to put together potentially life-saving winter wellbeing packs for people accessing the charity’s drug and alcohol service in Tayside. Each pack contains a range of items such as a thermal hat, scarf, gloves, socks, lip balm, hand sanitiser, hand warmer, emergency blanket and toothbrush.
A card protected in a weatherproof plastic wallet has also been included containing useful helplines, emergency contact numbers, information on local health services, as well the opening hours of Hillcrest Futures services. A reminder to always carry Naloxone, an overdose reversal medication, is also included on the card.
Hillcrest Futures’ managing director, Joy Dunlop explained: “The freezing conditions throughout winter are especially challenging for people experiencing poverty and/or homelessness. The impact the weather has on their health and wellbeing can be life-threatening.
“We are distributing the wellbeing packs to service users in Dundee and Perth via our harm reduction services in both cities, and we have approximately 50 packs to give to those most in need. We hope by handing the packs out this will further incentivise people to use our service and build a rapport with hard to reach populations, such as homeless people, to ensure we are identifying and supporting those most at risk.
“We are extremely grateful for the generosity shown by those who contributed to our campaign, with a special thanks to Lettingweb for their kind donation of £300. The positive effect the packs are having on people’s lives is great to see.”
A client of Hillcrest Futures’ harm reduction service said: “Winter’s a tough time on the streets. I was really happy to be given a pack and would like to thank Hillcrest Futures as it will make things a bit easier for me.”
Hillcrest Futures’ drug and alcohol service offers a variety of interventions such as overdose prevention, blood borne virus testing and treatment, safer injecting advice as well as promoting recovery activities and mutual aid. To find out more, click here.