Issued by Skipton Intermediaries
Skipton Building Society’s inaugural Community Giving scheme has awarded £1,000 to Edinburgh charity Steps to Hope, towards their work caring for the homeless and those suffering with addiction.
The £40,000 Community Giving fund is supporting 40 good causes across the UK over the first year of Skipton Intermediaries’ scheme, with mortgage brokers and employees of intermediary firms invited to nominate charities and organisations which support housing and homelessness.
Musselburgh-based mortgage broker Stisi Group nominated Steps to Hope, a non-profit Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation, for their work caring for the homeless and those suffering with addiction in Edinburgh. The charity aims to engage with the most vulnerable to share the solution to addiction and to support them into, and through, the process of recovery. Notably, over half of the organisation’s volunteers are addicts in recovery – including the charity’s founder.
Steps to Hope provide an extensive service in Edinburgh, which has increased to meet the challenges of the coronavirus crisis. The charity now provides food for those on the streets five days a week, running three soup kitchens and operating a mobile catering van – currently feeding around 450 people each week. In addition, the organisation offers a weekly overnight shelter, provides a supportive presence on the streets with morning coffee runs and supports service users before they begin rehabilitation, by paying for daily living costs and accommodation.
Paul Fenn, Skipton’s Head of Business Development, said: “Skipton’s new Community Giving scheme enables brokers and employees of intermediary firms across the country to identify those groups which are doing great work and help them access a £1,000 pot of cash.
“We are delighted to announce the first 40 community groups and charities to receive funding and we hope our donation enables them to continue to make a real difference in their work.”
Richard Roncero, Operations Manager and Founder of Steps to Hope, said: “We were delighted that Stisi Group chose to nominate us for Skipton’s Community Giving Scheme, and thrilled to find out we’ve been awarded £1,000. This is a huge deal for us, as we rely solely on fundraising activity and donations for everything we do in supporting Edinburgh’s homeless and those suffering addiction. Due to the coronavirus crisis recovery services are limited, so we are offering as much support as we can to as many as we can – but we’re also spending more funds than ever before.
“We’re incredibly grateful for our dedicated volunteers and the support we receive, but as long as there are people on our streets, suffering from addiction, we must keep up our fundraising efforts. It’s unacceptable that in 2020 there are still people with no home, lost and forgotten, and we need to find ways of reaching those who aren’t able to come to us.”
Ross Stisi, Managing Director of Stisi Group, said: “Skipton’s Community Giving scheme was a brilliant opportunity for us to highlight the work of a charity near us, and on asking the local community we were overwhelmed with votes for Steps to Hope. We were delighted that Skipton awarded them a £1,000 donation – Richard and the team of volunteers are incredibly passionate and driven in all that they do to give Edinburgh’s homeless and those suffering addiction a chance for change.”
Anyone wishing to donate to Steps to Hope can do so via their website.