Students at Gateway Sixth Form College based in Hamilton worked together to support homeless women in the city this Christmas. The teams of students joined the ‘Helping Handbags’ campaign and collected and filled over 30 bags and handbags with personal care items to be distributed by the charity ‘The Bridge’ to homeless and vulnerably housed women.
The collection was led by Su Peters, Head of Schools for A Levels at Gateway College who was inspired to get the students involved in a cause close to her heart. She said, “I have been involved with this charity for a number of years and am particularly keen to support women in crisis and issues that face vulnerable women. I am really impressed with the generosity of our students who have got involved and taken the campaign on-board, donating and collecting items that will make a huge difference to women’s lives this Christmas.”
Simran studies Health and Social Care Level 3 said, “I learnt about the project in our Tutor Group and made up 3 bags. We wanted to help as it shows people who are not as fortunate as us that we care and gives them love and support.”
IT student Callum added, “It felt good to help those who are in need. Some people might not have a job or a home and some people cannot even eat when they should. Not everyone is charitable so I wanted to do what I could and helped collect and give donations.”
ICT and Law student Tiago also got involved through his Tutor Group and helped to collect donations from students and pack bags. He said, “it’s Christmas time and a good opportunity to give gifts to women who are homeless. By supporting them we are helping them to look after themselves and their families and making them feel valued.”
Kath Lawson- West from The Bridge said, “we would like to thank Gateway College for their donations. Our charity serves over 6000 hot meals a year, offers warm clothes, a temporary place to sleep, a drop in centre and advice and mentoring to people in the city who are sleeping on the streets or do not have suitable, secure accommodation.”
“The Helping Handbags campaign is aimed at specifically supporting vulnerable women and feminine hygiene is a big challenge for some due to costs. Many women are supporting their partners and children in uncertain circumstances and on very low incomes. The added expense of buying personal hygiene items, which have additional VAT costs may come low on their list of priorities when caring for their family. These donations are invaluable in providing the extra support needed.”