By Tess and Olivia, Yr 10
On 10 February 2020 a group of pupils visited the Mission homeless shelter and we all learned a lot. On arrival at 7:00pm, we delivered several bags of clothes which we proceeded to lay out, making them available to anyone who needed them. We then began helping to prepare the beds which were organised side-by-side along the wall of the main church hall.
At 7:30pm we started to prepare a dinner of exquisite jacket potatoes and chilli, along with salad and toppings such as: chilli flakes, butter and cheese, followed by strawberry cheesecake. There was also juice, coffee and tea. Dinner was served at 8pm. We then washed all the dishes and sterilised them.
We noticed that lots of the clothes we had brought to give away were really appreciated. We visited in the aftermath of Storm Ciara and all the Guests spoke to us of the hardship of living on the street in the cold winter months. One Guest had survived in a tent for 16 months, living on wasteland but the storm had destroyed his shelter. Everyone was really thankful for the Nightshelter and for the chance to rest and chat with us.
It is safe to say that everyone was surprised at the astounding friendliness of all the Guests, there was a strong atmosphere of inclusiveness. Some of us took part in an impromptu music concert with drum lessons, piano recitals and the opportunity to sing some classics together. A few of us took part in a relatively skillful and joyous game of pool. Overall it was an experience we believe we all benefited from and we would like to think the Guests enjoyed it as well.
It was so nice to have that conversation last night. The young people were a delight to chat with. They are such appreciative people and we all enjoyed the music. It is rare indeed to have time with people of such different backgrounds. It gives me hope.
Night Shelter guest - February 2020