Sheffield homeless charity dream hits £1 million

St Wilfrid's Centre celebrate St George's Day with morris dancers, singing and St George himself
St Wilfrid's Centre celebrate St George's Day with morris dancers, singing and St George himself
Have your say

Charity staff in Sheffield are celebrating after an appeal for a residential centre for the homeless hit the £1 million mark.

St Wilfrid’s Centre launched the appeal to raise £1.8 million to build the facility to help homeless and vulnerable people in March last year.

And the charity, which operates a day service for the city’s socially excluded adults, celebrated hitting the key milestone with a St George’s Day celebration at the centre on Queens Road, Lowfield.

Famous faces including snooker ace Ken Docherty and Sheffield United legend Tony Currie attended, along with the Lord Mayor of Sheffield, Coun Vickie Priestley.

Clients at the centre performed a variety of English songs, while members of Sheffield City Morris performed.

Kevin Bradley, St Wilfrid’s director, said: “We launched the project in March last year and at the time there were some that thought we wouldn’t raise the money in the current financial climate.

“We’ve had support from Sheffield and across the UK and I am so grateful to each and every person and organisation that has donated.”

“I am confident this will be a flagship scheme for Sheffield, which could be used as a model and rolled out across the country.”

Plans for the residential unit on land next to the existing centre have already been given the go-ahead by Sheffield Council, with building work now set to begin next year.

It will house about 50 people for up to two years and will see them attend classes to improve their social and employment skills.

Mr Bradley said: “Moving into a new home for many people can be traumatic and just to give people a council flat does not always work.

“They move from town to town, which perpetuates the problem of homelessness.

“I want everyone in the project together for Sheffield. We want everyone – all the firms in Sheffield to be part of it. I want to show the rest of the country what can be done for the homeless and vulnerable without Government funding.”