Homeless benefit from Habitat donations

Helen Hamilton from the BCC, Rahena Duncombe and John Ryan from the Homeless Breakfast with Cath Watson of Showers for the Homeless Outreach program. Cr Paul Spooner and Brandon Saul are pictured in the background. Photo Jeff ‘Showered’ Dawson

Paul Bibby

Two services for local homeless people have received a much-needed $20,000 donation from a group of local businesses.

Forty local brands, located in the Habitat development, donated the equivalent of ten per cent of their Christmas sales to help the Community Showers and Homeless Breakfast programs, which take place in Byron Bay each week.

The donation was handed to the head of the Byron Community Centre (BCC), which runs the projects, on March 28.

Centre manager Paul Spooner said the money would sustain the Community Showers program for another 12 months.

‘The showers program was set up in response to the homeless not having anywhere to get a hot shower in Byron Bay,’ Cr Spooner said.

‘When the Fletcher Street cottage was shut down a couple of years ago community health concerns were expressed.

‘The old girl guides hut was unused and so we started the project there two mornings a week. People can get a hot shower with soap and shampoo and everything like that and then use a clean towel.’

The Homeless Breakfast happens on Wednesday mornings behind the Byron Bay Community Centre.

Habitat developer, Brandon Saul, said the particular charity was selected to ensure Christmas proceeds helped the Byron Bay community.

‘This was a way to show how much we value the community,’ Mr Saul said.

‘We want the wider community to benefit from this concept and the work we do, and we hope this donation will assist Byron Community Showers to achieve their own community goals.

‘We have so much in store for 2018 and we hope to continue supporting these types of initiatives throughout the year.’

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