Pre-Christmas cheer for volunteers who help the homeless…

Staff and volunteers at two centres in Cumbria which support people who are homeless people received boxes of ginger-flavoured treats from Grasmere Gingerbread®.

Manna House in Kendal offers vital advice, advocacy and drop-in support while Calderwood House in Egremont has ten bedrooms and provides round-the-clock support for residents.

In addition to donating its famous spicy-sweet cross between a biscuit and cake and other products, Grasmere Gingerbread® gave £750 to Manna House and £500 to Calderwood House from Christmas mail order sales.

Joanne Hunter, co-director of Grasmere Gingerbread®, said: “These two amazing organisations rely upon dozens of volunteers who give love, time and practical support to help people who are struggling to find and keep a roof over their heads.

“Homelessness is a cause close to our heart. Our business was founded in 1854 when Grasmere Gingerbread® inventor Sarah Nelson and her family met the ‘poor and needy’ tenancy criteria for Church Cottage - now The Grasmere Gingerbread Shop.

“Without that vital leg-up I doubt whether Sarah would have been able to start her unique business in Grasmere.”

Rebecca Irving, Senior Housing Recovery Worker at Calderwood House, explained that a lot of homelessness in Cumbria was “hidden” from public view because many people “sofa surfed” but this was only a temporary fix.

“Homelessness is just as big a problem here as in big cities like Manchester but it’s not as obvious as there are less people visibly homeless on the streets,” she explained.

Andrea Aldridge, Chief Officer at Manna House, thanked Grasmere Gingerbread® for remembering their staff and volunteers at Christmas.

“It was such a lovely treat for everyone here,” she said.