Hamper appeal gets £500 boost

(rear left to right) Joanne Tweddle (asda), Lynn Ford (cleveland fire support refugee network), Paul Barber (wynyard park), Heather Wyman (clevelend fire support network) and Dave Bateman (cleveland fire support network) along with Naomi Theakson (cleveland fire support network) as they hold hamper items. Picture by FRANK REID
(rear left to right) Joanne Tweddle (asda), Lynn Ford (cleveland fire support refugee network), Paul Barber (wynyard park), Heather Wyman (clevelend fire support network) and Dave Bateman (cleveland fire support network) along with Naomi Theakson (cleveland fire support network) as they hold hamper items. Picture by FRANK REID
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THERE was a major development in a charity’s Christmas hamper appeal when kind-hearted bosses stepped in after reading about its plea for help in the Hartlepool Mail.

Cleveland Fire Support Network (CFSN) which works with victims of fires hopes to provide hampers for families struck by fire over coming weeks.

The charity urged people to show some early seasonal goodwill and help donate items or money to buy provisions through an appeal in the Mail.

That goodwill was immediately shown by Wynyard Park which took volunteers shopping at Asda in Hartlepool and picked up the £500 tab while the supermarket also provided much-needed items.

CFSN offers practical help to victims of fire through its After Fire Service which ranges from comforting and counselling to providing new furniture.

Paul Barber, Wynyard Park managing director said: “We are keen to support the local community and initiatives within it and this particular project stood out.

“CFSN is such a worthwhile cause and our contribution will hopefully help towards making a difference this Christmas to any unfortunate victims of fire.

“The work of CFSN is extremely valued and we commend Heather and the volunteers for putting in so much time and effort.”

CFSN was formed in June 2007 and is now a registered charity with a string of volunteers from all walks of life. The network relies on donations, fundraising and the help of volunteers.

Volunteers work in the community alongside Cleveland Fire Brigade staff including operational fire fighters and regularly visit schools, colleges and businesses.

CFSN chief executive Heather Whyman, said of the Wynyard Park boost: “It is a fantastic and spirited gesture.

“Over the year CFSN has supported families who have suffered a domestic house fire. Many have lost all or some of their belongings while some have even lost their homes completely.

“Although we cannot rebuild or bring back those lost possessions we can, with the kindness and generosity of local people and businesses such as Wynyard Park and Asda Hartlepool, offer a helping hand and a measure of love in the way we support them especially at this time of year.

“It is with great humility that CFSN is able to give these families a Christmas hamper full of delicious items.”

The network also carries out a wide range of home safety measures including fitting free fire alarms.

It also fits sensory alarms to the hearing impaired community working with audiology departments, social services, housing providers, and various groups throughout the region.

The network was given £2,000 at the Hartlepool Mail Best of Health Awards in recognition of the valuable work it carries out. A raffle at the prestigious awards evening in June raised more than £800 with the remainder made up by the Mail to help the charity’s work.

Anyone interested in donating or helping with the Christmas hamper appeal should ring (01642) 288009 or visit www.clevelandfsn.org.

You can also contact paul.watson@northeast-press.co.uk