Our annual charity endeavour was in its third and final year in 2017. This year marked the culmination of three years of service and community spirit and this is how we done it.
During the 2015 Christmas period, Poetical Word delivered £700 worth of gifts to children in West Middlesex Hospital with aims to serve the community and those who would be spending Christmas away from home. The following year, we were able to do the same in addition to visiting an older people's care home and putting on a poetry show.
In 2017, through some effective marketing campaigns, and the help of local community groups, we were able to raise £1300. In addition to the above, we were able to deliver 110 essential packs to the homeless in central London.
These essential packs has items in them which we felt a homeless person cannot do without. As our founder has experienced homelessness himself, he has first hand knowledge of the project needs. As such, we had items like toothpaste, toothbrushes, female sanitary pads, socks, gloves, a woolly hat, a brand new woolly zipped hoodie, a reusable bottle of water, hand wipes, toilet accessories, deodorant, razor blades and some dried fruit or granola bars.
We worked with a host of organisations including, Humanity First, Grenfell Tower Relief Project, Autism Hounslow, SWAT (the Sikh Welfare and Awareness Team), Hounslow Holy Trinity Church and many other individuals across West London to raise money and prepare for the project. One of the ways in which we raised money was through mentioning it at our events, collaborations and also holding a movie night. Without the support of the local community, this project could never have gone ahead.
In total, we handed out 110 homeless essential packs as well as an additional 132 throughout the festive period.
One of the other objectives of the XG4All project was to spread cheer to the children at the West Middlesex Hospital Paediatrics ward. We got together a small team that worked tirelessly to ensure everything was ready for Christmas Eve. The team was lead by Mindy Sidhu who was instrumental in bringing the project together. Our initiator, Dr. Randeep Karwal was also instrumental in providing guidance when needed.
Delivering this project allowed us to be there for those people who couldn’t spend Christmas at home with their own family. Where many people spend this period in festives, there are also many people who feel extremely left out, lonely and isolated, so we decided to sacrifice our Christmas for the sake of theirs; and the effect it it continues to have is lasting.
We created a video which documented the project, which can be seen on our YouTube channel or our website.
One of the highlights of this project for us was helping Hounslow Youth Centre put on a dinner for those alone at Christmas. The event saw around 150 older people enjoy a hearty Christmas meal in the company of Hounslow Mayor Cllr Sue Sampson.