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Community nurses appeal for homeless donations over Christmas

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Community nurses, doctors, and support workers are asking for donations of clothes or toiletries to help Norwich’s most vulnerable citizens this winter.

Staff at Norfolk Community Health and Care NHS Trust from its City Reach Health Services team provide outreach sessions across the city throughout the year for people living on the streets or in hostels or refuges.

“Someone already suffering from lack of nutrition… or sleep deprivation, is also at risk of developing hypothermia”

Ermir Prendi

They said the winter brought “particular challenges” due to the risk of people developing hypothermia, as they launched an appeal for clothing including socks, new underwear, T-shirts, gloves and hats.

The team works with charity the St Martin’s Housing Trust to help people who find it difficult to access mainstream GP health services, including asylum seekers, gypsies and travelers, and sex workers.

Staff also encourage vulnerable groups to visit drop-in centres across the city that offer medical care and support in finding work and securing housing.

Ermir Prendi, service manager for City Reach Health Services, said: “Winter weather brings particular challenges; someone who may already be suffering from lack of nutrition, substance abuse or sleep deprivation, is also at risk of developing hypothermia.

“We’re very grateful for donations like this through the year, but it’s particularly important when the temperature drops”

Ermir Prendi

“We are looking for donations of men’s and women’s clothing, toiletries and personal hygiene goods,” he said. “When people come to see us at our base at Under 1 Roof, we can offer them showers and it’s nice if we can give them clean clothes to change into.”

“We’re very grateful for donations like this through the year, but it’s particularly important when the temperature drops,” he added.

He noted that the “vital” initial contact that outreach workers provided to prevent people’s health from deteriorating and to help them accept future care.

Donations are being accepted by City Reach Health Services at its base at Under 1 Roof, Westwick Street, Norwich, NR2 4SZ.

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