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Gloucestershire Business News

Homelessness charity announces partnership with Hermes

National homelessness charity Emmaus, which has a regional community in Gloucestershire, has partnered with Hermes UK to help increase its offering to people who have experienced homelessness.

Joe Feeley, chief executive at Emmaus Gloucestershire

Funds raised by the consumer delivery company will be used across the UK to expand the services the charity is able to offer.

As a corporate partner, Hermes will aim to raise a minimum of £100k for Emmaus through fundraising activities with clients and employees.

The business is also exploring other ways to support the charity, including running technology and interview training workshops, donating items for people and providing valuable work experience and placements to the formerly homeless people Emmaus supports, known as companions.

The Emmaus community in Gloucestershire, which is one of 29 across the UK, provides a home for as long as it is needed, along with the stability and self-esteem that comes from having meaningful work to do every day. Current companions are also offered daily support and funded training to help them rebuild their lives.

With support from Hermes, Emmaus hopes to increase the number of people they can support in the UK and improve training and development opportunities that companions can access.

"This is a fantastic partnership for our charity and for all Emmaus communities around the UK," said Joe Feeley, chief executive at Emmaus Gloucestershire.

"We're really excited to see how this new partnership will unfold and increase the opportunities we can offer to people here in Gloucestershire. I would like to thank Emmaus UK for enabling this Hermes link-up and for supporting regional communities during the national pandemic."

Martijn de Lange, CEO at Hermes UK, said: "We're seeing the impact of the pandemic first hand when it comes to the volume of people looking for work and applying for roles, and unfortunately a severe consequence of rising unemployment is that the UK's homelessness crisis is being further exacerbated. There is an additional financial strain on local services, which makes charities such as Emmaus even more important now.

"We're pleased to be able to support this crucial cause by giving people the tools to help them succeed, both now and in the future."

Emmaus Gloucestershire's community home and superstore are based in Gloucester, and the charity has four other shops in Cheltenham, Nailsworth and Stroud. The Emmaus shops are temporarily closed for the lockdown, but normally sells second-hand furniture and other donated goods and are staffed by companions.

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