Following on from the excellent article about Colin, in the Rotary Magazine article “Bag for Life” The real Bag for Life - Rotary in Great Britain and Ireland (rotarygbi.org) which highlighted Colin, an ex- homeless/Rough sleeper, and his journey to get his life back on track by assisting Rotary Sowerby Bridge in Rucksacks4Homeless. Sadly, Colin died just before the article was published.
In memory of Colin:
Colin’s story truly reached the heart of a number of Rotary Clubs within Rotary in Yorkshire and Lincolnshire and beyond. This was clearly demonstrated by the number of enquiries received asking our team to give presentations either by Zoom or face to face.
From operating the project solely in Calderdale, Rotarians are working together with the Rotary Club of York and Rotary Lindum Lincoln. Both Clubs have collected filled rucksacks bearing the Rotary Brand to work alongside homeless organisations in their area. York Rotarians report: "Sowerby Bridge members have helped us in York to make a start on our project, where we are working with the city council, Salvation Army and a local charity, and furthermore have provided us with the rucksacks we need".
Rucksacks4Homeless have recently been successful in gaining a new Rotary Ambassador, Nik a 33-year-old who for many years spent a very chaotic lifestyle sleeping rough, had no identity and at times no money. Nik has proved to be a vital link between Rotary and the Homeless/Rough sleeper. He now spends most of his time working on a voluntary basis with young people and volunteering with the local homeless organisations in Calderdale. Nik is thriving on what he is doing – as he says it gives him" that feel good” factor knowing that he is now giving back to the community.
Nik has even expressed an interest in joining the new local Passport Club, Rotary People of Kindness or as they call themselves POK. Rucksacks4Homeless has proved to be an invaluable project in bringing likeminded Clubs from within Rotary in Yorkshire and Lincolnshire and beyond to work together, share fellowship and friendship. If you are interested in finding out more then please contact: Hazel Brindle via firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you to Rupert Cooke for his featured graphic and production of the Colin film