Categories
Awareness

Real visible people power.

 

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So where to start?

Well it started with a tweet, then 2 blogs, a dm or 2 swapped, then a meeting was set. The Invisibles were born.

Now a call was made to the folks on twitter, an idea conjured in the mind of one guy seemed to stir worrying, even painful feelings of a mostly hidden reality, something clicked in many heads. People researched, added personal and professional experiences ensuring as much fact and reality was available to assist the group in developing meaningful aims and goals. Through considered discussion and utilising the obvious talents at our disposal these were quickly set.

So the task was in hand, we will collect sleeping bags and warm clothing for our roofles/homeless and those in fuel poverty.

Initial contact was made with the wonderful volunteers at http://www.waysidecentre.org.uk with colleagues visiting and calling asking for advice and to explain our idea. I can confidently say this certainly energised @Invisiblesthe and with the support of community/housing workers in the east end of Glasgow our first collection was organised in The Church of the Nazerene on Easter Sunday. More than 25 bags of clothes, blankets and footwear donated. A humbling start indeed. We again would like to say thank you for this generosity.

During discussions at meetings, email or on the phone (The Chairman likes a wee call but more on that later….maybe) we looked for the idea of a large scale collection. We spoke about football games, contacting camping suppliers and many other considerations.  T in the Park was briefly mentioned at an early meeting but like many idea’s in the planning stages of a project, they get lost in the flow. Well it came back on the agenda quick. Now many will not realise how quickly the TITP collection was brought together and the fabulous work carried out behind the scenes on social media by some in the group to raise awareness of this drive. Quite fantastic effort by all involved. Thousands of leaflets distributed at Buchanan Street Bus Station and a twitter and facebook mini frenzy ensued. The groovy hipsters (Ah the good old days) got it and with a massive 500 bag donation from @tangerinefields more than 1300 sleeping bags were donated and then collected by an ever growing team of Invisibles working away from the fields of TITP to the bus station. We are delighted and again humbled by this astonishing reponse. THANK YOU XXX

We would like to thank the many people who responded to the request for assistance in the sorting, washing and distribution of the TITP collection. Some interesting finds I’m told : )  I can reasonably suggest many a washing machine and car were being worked hard. Would like to make a special mention to those who travelled from and to Stirling and all using personal transport to assist. Last word on TITP. We have realised we now have access to an ever growing, caring and positive group of people willing to Stay The Course. Hold on tight folks who knows where this is going : )

http://www.waysidecentre.org.uk  http://wwwglasgowcitymission.com  received considerable donations. A soup kitchen in Hamilton received assistance too. All very grateful.

Now as the dust settles we ask ourselves what next? Getting cold soon, folks will need our support more than ever.

We would like to propose a suggestions link to our social media sites, ideas that could be brought to meetings and possibly actioned. We have always said our group is a collective, a collective of people, minds and ideas. We are not, nor will we ever be an exclusive club so get your ideas in folks.

The group are in or have been in discussions with several other organisations including http://www.ghn.org.uk this highlights the positive buzz around The Invisibles and progress made in such a short time.

Thank you to each and every soul who donated and gave up their own time to grow this idea. You are all special people.

Special mention to our friends who removed the anti rooflessness barriers in St.Vincent Lane. More positive action for the right reason. Why wait eh.

Now a question for The Chairman. Remember me telling you the potential of this thing? When you first tweeted/blogged did you dare imagine, did you?  Look what has been achieved.

People are amazing we just need to remember that sometimes.

Take care my friends.

visible2me (The Invisibles)

original article and some pics from http://visible2me.wordpress.com/

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Categories
Awareness

Invisibles Winter Collection Statement

INVISIBLES-4.jpgThe Invisibles are a small independent charity initiative committed to helping homeless people and homeless charities in Glasgow.We formed after our founder, Dermot Hill wrote an internet blog on the issue of homelessness in early February, highlighting the homeless problem in Glasgow and asking for help on this from fellow Glaswegians.

Dermot works on railway maintenance and has been very concerned at the plight of Glasgow’s homeless, after seeing them nightly while he has been working night shifts on the railway lines.After Dermot put out his appeal, the group arranged their first meeting a few nights later, to discuss what we, as a group could do to help the homeless of Glasgow.

We then had a series of meetings in the Parkhead Housing Association over the next few months where we could decide how we as a group could help the homeless.All members of the group have put a lot of time and effort into the initiative and come from all different backgrounds, walks of life and have all brought different skill sets.

The group decided we would not collect money as we wanted to help the homeless through direct action – getting what they need and helping to deliver it to them, and the best way to do this would be to collect sleeping bags and clothing to donate to Homeless Shelters and Homeless Charities in Glasgow, such as The Wayside Club, The Glasgow City Mission, The Marie Trust and the Simon Community.

 The reason why we named our group The Invisibles has a double meaning:

  1.  The first meaning being that homeless people are regularly ignored by the public on the street, and society as a whole and we wanted to highlight this and help them.
  2. The second meaning is that our group members, while wanting to help the homeless, also wanted to remain invisible in the background, preferring any publicity given to our group rather than highlight us, highlight our collections, campaigns, donators and the homeless charities we help.

Our first collection was at the Church of Nazarene in Parkhead on Easter Sunday, where we collected 25 bags and assorted clothing items, which we then donated to The Wayside Club.

At the start of July, homeless barriers were erected in St Vincent Lane in Glasgow which caused great concern within the group, as they stop homeless people, who can’t find a shelter or a place to stay at night, from being able to sleep rough.Glasgow City Council gave the owner of the building involved in erecting the barriers seven days to take them down, but after some action by fellow Glaswegians, they were taken down the next morning.

The Invisibles group decided, on the Tuesday before T In The Park, to start a campaign to appeal to the T In The Park goers to ask them to donate to us their used sleeping bags when they were returning from the festival the following Sunday and Monday, so we could clean them and pass them onto Homeless Shelters and Charities to give to homeless people.The group appealed through our Twitter and Facebook accounts and contacted every Scottish newspaper, media and music outlet in Scotland and gave press interviews to highlight the sleeping bag appeal, from which we had an excellent response to, in both social media and the press.

Many people volunteered to help us in distributing flyers to the people going to T in The Park on the Wednesday and Thursday prior to the event and also to help us collect the sleeping bags on the Sunday and Monday when the festival finished.After a slow start on Sunday night, due to it mostly being day-trippers leaving the festival, we had an overwhelming response to our collection from the T in The Park goers coming back on the Monday morning, with around 500 bags collected, roughly another 100 donated from the collection point which we got arranged just outside the site and 500 in total being donated from Tangerine Fields, a private company who set up tents at T in The Park.Roughly 1,100 sleeping bags were collected, enough at estimates to keep the homeless in Glasgow warm for a year.

Quite a percentage of these bags had to be washed, and the following Wednesday we had more volunteers giving up more or their free time to sift through the uncleaned bags and take them away individually to wash them.The bags were washed, collected and were given to the homeless shelters in Glasgow and some to the Hamilton Soup Kitchen.The Wayside Club in Glasgow was fully stocked up with sleeping bags and The Glasgow City Mission had limited space left to take more sleeping bags.

We have built up and maintain a working relationship with The Glasgow Homelessness Network, – who release the numbers for the homeless in Glasgow and liaise with the Private and Public sector homeless charities and initiatives. They give us information and data regularly on how we can help out other Shelters and Homeless Initiatives in Glasgow.With this information, we have now been speaking directly to the main Glasgow Homeless Charities and Initiatives – The Glasgow City Mission, The Wayside Club, The Marie Trust and The Simon Community – To find out on a regular basis what they need and what the homeless or Glasgow need to be provided with.

We have now donated around 200 sleeping bags to the Simon Community for their Outreach program which gives the sleeping bags directly to homeless people sleeping rough in Glasgow.We have also also provided 60 sleeping bags to the Glasgow City Mission with sleeping bags for their indoor Winter Night Shelter and will be donating 170 quilts very soon.

The Invisibles Winter Collection Appeal was started in early September, to provide Sleeping bags and suitable winter clothing such as Hats, Scarves, Wooly Hats, Wooly Jumpers, Socks, Underwear and Old Boots for the homeless of Glasgow, for when it gets near winter time, when they need our help the most.Volunteers arranged clothing collections with their families, friends, schools and workplaces for us, while The Parkhead Housing Association, Easterhouse Community Church and Molly’s Cosy Cafe in Shawlands served as our drop off points, where Glaswegians could take their Winter Clothing Items for us to collect.

We had a massive response, so much so, that we do not need any more clothes at the moment as we are full with donations, ready to be delivered soon to the Homeless Charities in Glasgow and the some of the surrounding areas.We also took part in the Glasgow Rucksack Project 2014 Appeal at the Gorbals Legal Aid Centre on Sunday December 7th, where roughly 8000 Rucksacks were collected, doubling their total of 4000 in 2013, with many Mens and Womans’s clothing items, Sleeping Bags, Food and Toiletries collected in the Rucksacks, going directly to the Glasgow Homeless charities and straight to help the Homeless of Glasgow.

As a result of the Rucksack Project, aided by our collection and by many others in the City, The Glasgow Homeless Charities are now full until after new year, an excellent achievement by all involved and showing again the excellent generosity and warm hearts of the people of the City of Glasgow.

The Invisibles are pleased to announce we are running the Glasgow Rucksack Project 2016, passed on from the excellent Lorna McLean and hope it will be an ever bigger success next year and all volunteers are more than welcome to attend and help.We are also looking into starting a T In The Park campaign earlier next year, which with earlier planning, we are hoping will be even more successful than this summer’s one.

In the next few weeks, we will be looking to volunteers to help sort through the remainder of our Invisibles Winter Collection Appeal, if you are interested, please contact us on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

If you would like to know more about the group, or to help with future collections and appeals, or or if you are a Local Business in Glasgow and you would like to act as drop off points for us in future appeals, or to provide much needed storage space to our group, you can find out more about us and also contact us at our twitter handle @Invisiblesthe and our Facebook Page See The Invisibles.

Categories
Appeal

Rucksack Appeal 2014

Gorbals Legal Aid, 72 Commercial Road, Twomax Rear Annex, Gorbals, Glasgow G5 0QZ

https://www.facebook.com/events/1530476353853688/

It’s simple to get involved ~ Go to your cupboards, wardrobes and local charity shops, get a cheap rucksack or holdall, fill it with any or all of the following items which are in a decent state of repair ~ sleeping bag, EMPTY flask, gloves, hat, scarf, fleece, t-shirts, warm clothing, waterproof jackets/disposable rain ponchos and new underwear, thermals & socks, Boots and shoes.

We also have requests for unopened toiletries such as deodorants, shower gels, shampoo, razors, shaving foam, soaps, toothbrushes, toothpaste (nothing opened or half used as it could be a potential issue re health and safety, hygiene and contamination).

♥ We also need to have a clear indication if it is male or female clothes so please tie a brightly coloured ribbon to all female bags.

♥ We can also bring food ~ tinned or dried only, which should be kept separate from the rucksacks and which will be distributed to food banks throughout the city and beyond if there is enough to go round.

Please DO NOT add any alcohol, money, drugs, pills, medication, vitamin pills to your rucksacks..and please NO TENTS ~ Thank you.

♥ ♥ ♥ MONEY DONATIONS ~ There have been a few more enquiries regarding money donations for the Rucksack Project. As we are not set up as a charity we are unable to accept money ourselves but anyone wishing to offer donations of money or to set up a monthly donation ~ here are the correct bank details for any Donations which can be paid into the bank account (details below). It is likely that the any money received via the rucksack project event will go towards setting up the winter shelters so that no one needs to sleep on the street this winter. It would be helpful if the words “Rucksack Appeal 2014” could be entered in the reference field – This will make it easier for donations to be identified and the donation allocate accordingly.

Account Name: Glasgow Simon Community

Account Number: 10194620

Sort Code: 83-07-06

Thanks for your support – it’s very much appreciated

♥ Please bring your bags to a venue still to be confirmed on Sunday 7th DECEMBER between 12am and 5pm. Our donations will be distributed by the appropriate agencies, including The Simon Community, Marie Trust, Lodging House Mission, City House Mission and Destiny Angels to name but a few….who will then offer to rough sleepers, homeless and vulnerable people in the hope that it will help their days be a little more bearable ♥ There are a couple of drop off points if you are unable to make it on 7th December. ~

♥ ♥ ♥ DROP OFF POINTS for Rucksacks ~ We have five drop off points so far for those who are unable to get to the event on 7th December ~ Thank you Oona, Bryan and Claire for getting involved again Please phone before you go to be sure there is someone available to take your donation… thank you ♥

♥ Tir Na Nog (Oona McFarlane)

The Stables

Balfunning,

Balfron Station

G63 0NF

telephone: 01360 449300

https://www.facebook.com/oonamcfarlane?fref=ts

♥ The Hall (Bryan Murrin and staff)

457 Sauchiehall Street,

Charing Cross,

Glasgow. G2 3LG

Telephone: 0141 352 7971

https://www.facebook.com/hall.glasgow 

♥ Caesars, (Claire Devlin)

Unit 6

Craiglinn Yard (near Broadwood Football Stadium) Cumbernauld

G68 9AA

phone 01236 729748 wed + thurs 10-5 and Fri + Sat 10-4

https://www.facebook.com/claire.devlin.735

 

♥ Twechar Healthy Living & Enterprise centre (Sandra Sutton)

St John’s Way

Main St

Twechar

G65 9 TA

Mon- Fri 9am -9pm Sat 9am-4pm Sun 9am -3pm

 

♥ Castlemilk Youth Complex (Charles Thomas Lang)

39 Ardencraig Road

Castlemilk

Glasgow

G45 9HE

Tel: 0141 630 0000

 

♥ MS Centre,

Campbell Street,

Lochgilphead,

Sat morn 29th Nov 10-12 or Monday to Friday 9-5 the following week

♥ ♥ ♥ VOLUNTEERS~ Volunteers required after the event to help Catherine from Marie Trust ~ if you have time to help please call her during office hours on 0141 221 0169 ~ Thank you ♥

♥ Many of these required items can be found in our own wardrobes or picked up cheaply at our local shops.

You may prefer to make a monetary donation to help instead of bringing a rucksack. Any money can be donated directly to an official fund which is currently being set up to help with Winter Shelters… the link for this will follow soon.

♥ Looking forward to another Wonderful show of Love from us All… Come On… Get Involved and Share some Love ♥

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Categories
Appeal

Sleeping Bag Campaign Success.

Firstly let me thank everyone who helped in the sleeping bag campaign, the troops who attended TITP and donated their sleeping bags on their return, the volunteers who helped gather the sleeping bags.

The invisibles campaign has taken off with great gusto, even going as far as coverage from STV a special thanks to David Bateman who ran with the story, previous coverage from Ginny Clark at Westendreport.com.

What started off as a blog (rant) has become a reality…the group who run See the Invisibles are uber enthusiastic, I was appointed chairman but that position was give to me to keep me quiet, the group organise themselves and do it superbly, there is no leader required even though they have given me the title of a certain Korean dictator…I’m sure they are kidding…well I hope so .

Our first collection was at Easter by church of the Nazarene which was a success , the Wayside club being the beneficiaries, now the TITP collection was phenomenal nearly 1,000 sleeping bags collected and already some of them have been donated, the young folk who sometimes get a bad press really stood up to the plate and delivered the goods, the kids are alright…we had volunteers on Friday handing out leaflets to the troops heading up to Belado  and the way they engaged with us was great, we then went back to Buchanan bus station and the response was overwhelming, as I watched it all unfold I have to say it was very emotional .

I watched the story on STV’s Riverside programme and I will be honest and say I had a tear in my eye…to be honest I was greeting , then we had Eddie Toner on the later show( face for the radio), he put our cause across very well.

Let’s hope this is just the start of something big…I’m sure it is.
Once again a huge thanks everyone involved.

Dermot.

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Categories
Appeal

T IN THE PARK APPEAL

GOING TO T IN THE PARK ?

Can you protect the

countryside AND help

the ihomeless ?

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Have a fantastic time – enjoy the music and enjoy the camping…..but see when it’s all over, please remember that some people sleep outside all the time.

If you were planning to dump your sleeping bag, could you consider brining it home ? We will arrange collection points at Buchanan street bus station on Sunday night and Monday morning. We will wash them and make sure they go to someone who needs them.

Thank you, enjoy yourself and come home safe.

Follow us and See The Invisibles @Invisiblesthe

Categories
Awareness Video

Invisible by Billy No’Well