Poverty Hurts: Newton Aycliffe charity steps up support
Lifeline Community Action provides emergency aid to families and individuals in great need.
Unfortunately, local need is growing, and Corrinn Chambers and her team are now getting requests for winter coats every day.
This year a Poverty Hurts grant of £2,000 from County Durham Community Foundation will go towards helping hundreds more people.
Corrinn said: “This money will be used to buy high-tog duvets, throws, blankets, and hat and glove sets. As well as dressing gowns and slippers, to help people keep warm this winter.”
“So far the cheapest high-tog duvets we’ve found are around £13 or £14. For hygiene reasons we buy these rather than accepting non-monetary donations, although we’re more than happy to accept donations. We always offer a winter coat scheme, but donations have gone down this year. More people are needing to keep these items due to the increases in gas and electric.”
Corrinn and her small staff team of three are looking to stretch the grant as far as it will go by sourcing the least expensive items they can find.
Corrinn continued: “We’re seeing a lot more referrals for people needing support right now and they come from all over. Social and support workers, food banks, domestic abuse charities, social housing providers and of course we get self-referrals too. People are falling into arrears with their gas and electric as well as other bills due to the cost-of-living crisis.
Although the organisation is based in Newton Aycliffe, it supports people across the whole of County Durham and Darlington.
“The greatest need is for adult items and more volunteers to help the team meet the need.”
She added: “One lady that came in told us they were looking for extra jumpers to layer up in the house. She was essentially living in just one room so they didn’t need to heat the whole home.”
“We want to be there if someone is really struggling and staying at home cold. We can take a bit of the burden off so people can afford to pay their essential bills.”
To volunteer with Lifeline Community Action, please get in touch with the team
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