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Business Director Jumps at the Opportunity to Help Inspiring Man Donate Hats for Homeless this Christmas


The cold weather is on its way and many people’s thoughts have turned to Christmas parties, endless shopping or escaping it all for some Winter sun.  For one local business owner, a chance meeting in a coffee shop lead to the purchase of 50 woolly hats to be donated to homeless people living on the streets of Manchester this Christmas, along with a promise to encourage other businesses to donate their Greetings Card budgets to those in greater need.

Simon Thompson, Director of top venue finding agency, ConferencesGroup, was sitting outside a Cafe on Sunday afternoon, when he overheard a gentleman on the table next to him saying how he wanted to do something good this Christmas and had thought about giving woolly hats to homeless people on Christmas Day.  However, in order to do so, he would require a company to sponsor his efforts in order to purchase them.  “I immediately leaned across from where I was sitting and politely interrupted Mr Davies-Palin and said I would buy the hats required.’ I really admire people that do these activities off their own backs. I was just about to spend hundreds of pounds sending out corporate Christmas cards and thought forget that, I’ll spend my money on this and email everyone to tell them why they’ve not received a card this year” recalls Thompson.

Thanks to investment in tackling homeless over the last ten years, figures are falling, but with only one night shelter serving the entire city of Manchester and resources already stretched at other temporary accommodation options, the streets can be a grim reality for some individuals.

Geoff Davies-Palin, an ex-forces veteran, has raised funds for various different charities in the past, including the Royal British Legion, Mind and GEM Appeal.  This year, he wanted to do something that would directly support the homeless this Christmas. He said “you would be amazed at the number of ex-soldiers living on the streets. I just wanted to do something worthwhile. I was absolutely amazed by Simon’s kindness and following his generous donation, three of my friends were also encouraged to donate £40 each. I then put a thank-you on Facebook, and an ex-army colleague donated another £100.”

With the money Mr Davies-Palin has raised so far, he is able to put together 50 “Christmas stockings” for homeless people. These will each contain a woolly hat, socks and gloves, as well as other treats like chocolate, nuts and a pork pie.”

Most people take these kind of things for granted at Christmas, but hopefully we can bring a little joy to those in need. I would love to be able to include other luxuries like a toothbrush and toothpaste.  It’s amazing how much better you feel when you can just brush your teeth.”

If you, or your business would like to help Geoff in creating a brighter Christmas for people living on the streets of Manchester, email Geoff.daviespalin239@gmail.com