On World Homeless Day, Thursday 10th October, the Spare Change for Lasting Change rebrand is launched in Winchester.

Previously known as Spare Change for Real Change, and to reflect the values of this fantastic scheme, it has now been rebranded to Spare Change for Lasting Change.

Winchester Business Improvement District (BID) facilitates the scheme which is also supported by Winchester City Council and is one of the longest-established diverted giving schemes in the UK. The scheme is aimed at reducing street begging and rough sleeping by helping those most in need by diverting funds from the streets to local charities – making a lasting difference to those experiencing homelessness in the city.

Collection boxes are located in businesses across Winchester city centre and 100% of funds donated are passed to two local charities, Trinity Winchester and Winchester Churches Nightshelter. Donations to the scheme allow these two charities to provide the right support, in the right place and at the right time.

Each year at a Business Breakfast organised by Hampshire Chamber of Commerce and sponsored by Winchester BID, a cheque is presented to the two charities by local MP Steve Brine.

How do donations to the scheme help people experiencing homelessness? £200 can enable the charities to provide six counselling sessions for a person in need, which may involve providing help with mental health or addiction issues. As little as £5 will provide an individual experiencing homelessness with a hot drink, a home-cooked evening meal and a bed for the night.

Harriet France, Director and Manager at Jeremy France Jewellers in the High Street, which has a collection box in their store, said:

“As a business in Winchester it is a delight to be able to help with a local issue in the city and to help those in need. We are so proud of our customers who put money into our collection box and also those who take part in our charity clean and check service and donate to such a worthy cause. We are very pleased to support this scheme and it is a pleasure to clean our customers jewellery knowing that we are also raising money for local charities.”

Michele Price, Manager at Winchester Churches Nightshelter said:

“The issue of homelessness is evident to most of us, but it can often be hard to know the best way to help. Spare Change for Lasting Change is an opportunity to put funds behind well-established support services working hard to tackle the problem locally. Not only does Winchester Churches Nightshelter provide a safe and welcoming temporary home for 25 people every night but each resident also benefits from a wide range of one-to-one support sessions to help them to find a longer-term solution. Your spare change really can help to make a big difference to people’s futures.”

Sue Mckenna, Chief Executive at Trinity Winchester said:

“The scheme shows how people in Winchester really do care, they see the big picture and by pulling together they can make a lasting difference to the lives of people in the local community. Trinity would like to thank everyone for their continued support for this scheme, we are humbled by the generosity and kind donations we receive.”

Cllr Kelsie Learney, Cabinet Member for Housing and Asset Management at Winchester City Council said:

“Giving money directly to someone on the street may make a difference to their day but supporting the Spare Change for Lasting Change scheme and the work of Trinity and the Nightshelter can make a difference to their lives.”

For more information about Spare Change for Lasting Change and for a list of businesses where collection boxes are located, please visit: https://winchestersparechange.uk/


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