Well done to everyone who entered cakes, cards or crackers in the Dorset Christmas Challenge. It was a roaring success with residents, staff and even neighbours joining in the fun and sharing a cup of tea and a slice of cake.
The South West Young Chef and Overall Chef Winner 2010, 20 year old Ben Champkin, judged the cake category with the head chef of our local prestigious Eastleigh Hotel looking on. Ben was a great inspiration to the young people, two of whom spoke at length to Ben for guidance on how to progress in this career.
The local Community Police officers also came along to judge the Cracker category but were pulled away at the last minute to fight crime!
Last but not least, our very own Sarah Smith came along to judge the Card category. Sarah was brilliant.
Well done to all who entered, the cakes, cards and crackers were fantastic. Thanks.…
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Just before Christmas, John turned up at May Place House, YOU’s Direct Access Hostel in Basingstoke, worried and potentially homeless. He had been evicted from private rented accommodation and was relying on friends letting him sleep on their sofas.
We sat down with him, over a cuppa, and chatted through his situation and options, including the details of how he came to be homeless. Here is his story:
For the last 11 years, John had been a good tenant: paying his rent, paying his bills and being a good neighbour. John doesn’t have a history of drug or alcohol use and he doesn’t have a mental illness. Some time, ago, however, he lost his job and has been unable to find work. He is receiving Job Seekers Allowance and is in receipt of Housing Benefit.
Sensibly, John had set up a direct debit with his landlord so that his Housing Benefit was paid into his bank account and a standing order was in place to pay his rent. Unfortunately, his account had gone into arrears in recent months resulting in rent not being paid due to insufficient funds. This led to an unfortunate argument with the landlord and John’s …
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Employees at Havant based Lockheed Martin have helped support local charity YOU and its beneficiaries this Christmas. The organisation signed up to the 2011 Business in the Community Christmas Gift Appeal and has since been raising donations to help the homeless. The response from employees has been fantastic, with a variety of items donated, which will help to support the local homeless move on from sheltered to independent living.
Employees were asked to pick up one extra item on their trip to the supermarket. Set up in the main reception, around the Christmas tree, the employer’s donation point soon began to fill up. From juice to shower gel a variety of everyday items were donated, many of which we take for granted.
‘We were delighted to be able to support YOU through this appeal’ said Krysia Ruff, Senior Communications Representative, Lockheed Martin, ‘Knowing that your donations will make a difference locally, has really enthused staff to support. It shows what a difference can be made.’
‘We’re delighted with the support from Lockheed Martin and Business in the Community,” says YOU Chief Executive, Nicola Youern, “it may not seem much but, for some people, everyday items are often the very things …
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