Graih, one of the homeless charities on the Isle of Man, has highlighted the extraordinary generosity of the Great Manx Public.
At the end of 2020, after a year of such uncertainty, donations for Graih flooded in over Christmas and New Year, demonstrating once again the support of the Manx community for those on the margins.
Graih serves people who are homeless and in insecure accommodation. Their work includes a day-time drop-in, an overnight shelter and visiting people in the community. Throughout the first lockdown, and during the current restrictions, the drop-in has had to close but the shelter remains open throughout the night, every night for any adult needing it. Graih works closely with Adult Social Services and other third sector partners to maintain support for the most vulnerable.
‘In 2020 we provided over 4,200 meals through the drop-in. Our shelter provided 524 bed spaces to those needing accommodation. We had contact with 291 different individuals through the course of the year,’ said Erica Irwin, Graih’s manager.
‘Unfortunately these numbers show that the needs of those who are homeless are still there on the edges of our society.’
Throughout the festive period many individuals, businesses, schools, churches and community groups got into contact with Graih and donated everything from money to food. Highlights included Robinsons providing a full cooked Christmas meal for all guests and volunteers, a huge fundraising concert from Truman Falls and friends at St Ninians, and multiple other concerts, events and collections.
‘It was such a huge encouragement, not just for us but more importantly for our guests,” said Erica. ‘Those on the margins often feel forgotten and unloved but this generosity shows that people are thinking of others, even in such a difficult time for us all. We are so grateful and just want to say a huge thank you to everyone who donated and helped support us.’
As Graih faces 2021 it remains committed to serving those who are homeless and in insecure accommodation. Please find further information about Graih, including full details on their work and ways to get involved or give support, at www.graih.org.im.