Hospitality volunteers from across the industry have been out in force today to help Only A Pavement Away (OAPA) distribute ‘Winter Warmth’ kits to rough sleepers across London.
With a huge Arctic blast predicted to send temperatures plummeting this weekend, the volunteers handed out blankets, sleeping bags, coats, gloves, socks, flasks and tea bags in special OAPA branded waterproof backpacks, to help the homeless survive the cold winter months.
The group of volunteers from pub companies and restaurant groups gathered early this morning to help OAPA CEO and founder Greg Mangham pack the kits and hand them out to the homeless across the city.
Greg Mangham said: “I am absolutely overwhelmed by people’s generosity. We set up various collection points across London to accept blankets, coats and other items of clothing and we were completely inundated with donations. We also had hordes of people from across the hospitality industry give up their morning to help pack the goodies into special waterproof kit bags and hand them out to the homeless.
“Only A Pavement Away was founded to help get people off the streets and into work in the hospitality industry and, to date, we have managed to place one homeless person a week in work since we launched the charity. Our Winter Warmth campaign was designed to help raise awareness about OAPA, because with more financial donations and more hospitality companies signing up to employ those who are homeless, we can get more people into work. With bitterly cold temperatures predicted from this weekend, it couldn’t have been timelier, and we met many people who were incredibly grateful for the generous donations today.”
OAPA was established by hospitality industry consultant, Greg Mangham, on World Homeless Day, 10th October 2018, to help those living on the streets, as well as ex-offenders and vulnerable veterans, find employment in the hospitality industry.
To date, the charity has placed one homeless person a week in a job and it has ambitious plans to continue that growth at a pace in 2020.