Manchester City Council and one of the city’s most iconic charities has joined forces to launch a fundraising appeal for refugees fleeing Ukraine.
Set up by the Council in partnership with We Love MCR Charity (WLMC), all with the aim of supporting individuals and families fleeing the devastating conflict and arriving here in Manchester, the new MCR Ukraine Welcome Fund will fund charities and voluntary sector groups who are providing assistance – such as essential items, advice, and more.
Every penny raised and donated will go towards supporting Ukrainian evacuees in the city, and the Council has already kicked-off the fund with a donation of £50,000.
So far, the new MCR Ukraine Welcome Fund has already identified Caritas (Salford Diocese) and Europia as charity partners with “considerable experience” of supporting people who arrive in the city with next to nothing.
Further partners are also being brought in, according to the Council and WLMC.
“No one watching the horrific scenes unfolding in Ukraine following the Russian invasion can fail to be moved by the plight of the Ukrainian people,” said Bev Craig, Leader of Manchester City Council, on the launch of the fund.
“Manchester stands in solidarity with them and we are ready to play our part, together with towns and cities across Europe, in welcoming evacuees escaping the conflict and the humanitarian disaster it is creating.
“While some people will even be opening their homes to arriving Ukrainians, we know not everyone is in a position to do that, but by donating to this fund you can show you care by helping to provide practical help and support right here in Manchester to those escaping danger and starting to rebuild their lives.”
Joanne Roney OBE – Chief Executive of Manchester City Council said: “I’m glad the Council has been able to make the first donation as we know that Mancunians have big hearts and a proud tradition of hospitality and compassion.
“They will doubtless be generous in helping to welcome Ukrainian families to our city.”
Other organisations getting involved with the fund include Manchester City FC, who will be promoting the campaign on match days at both the Etihad Stadium and Academy Stadium.
What’s more, is that Manchester City Council is also working with other services to coordinate planning for the arrival of Ukrainian refugees under Government schemes – including the recently-launched Homes for Ukraine scheme, which enables UK residents to host Ukrainian evacuees.
Police arrest four men and shut down ‘incredibly dangerous’ cannabis farm in Salford
Police have shut down a suspected cannabis farm in Salford today, arresting four men.
Officers swooped on the property on Arthur Street in Swinton after finding evidence that the house was being used to grow cannabis plants.
The farm has been described as ‘incredibly dangerous’ to other occupants in the area.
Three rooms in the house were full of plants growing, with a huge amount of wiring surrounding them that posed a fire hazard.
The four men detained by Greater Manchester Police (GMP) Salford Neighbourhood Team were subsequently arrested on suspicion of involvement in the production and supply of cannabis and remain in police custody for questioning.
Sergeant Peter MacFarlane said: “Locating a cannabis farm is a great result for the team who are gathering intelligence and working hard to crackdown on drug-related crime across Salford.
“Farms of this nature are also incredibly dangerous to other occupants in the area. The building itself is still being made safe due to the amount of wiring around the plants. Criminals running these types of enterprises have no regard for public safety and in these conditions, an electrical fault from bad wiring could easily start a fire and endanger lives.
“The arrests and seizures then go someway towards disrupting the supply of illegal drugs and the criminality that comes with it, and will also make our communities safer.
“This operation was intelligence led and a huge part of our intelligence comes from members of the public sharing information with us. If you have suspicions about a crime taking place please report it so we can take positive action and bring those responsible to justice.”
You can make a report by calling 101 or 999 in an emergency. You can also report via the LiveChat function on GMP’s website: www.gmp.police.uk
Alternatively you can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
Featured image: GMP
‘Groundbreaking’ new app to help get homeless people into work launches in Manchester
Homeless families across Manchester are set to benefit from a “groundbreaking” new service that gives them access to employment support.
With the ultimate aim of helping homeless people move out of temporary accommodation and into their own homes, Manchester City Council has announced a new pilot partnership with Beam – a social enterprise that fundraises on behalf of homeless people and connects them with a supportive online community.
Through Beam’s “innovative” app-based platform, homeless people can raise money for items that often end up being financial obstacles to them moving into a permanent home, whether than be funding equipment or training to help them secure stable and financially-viable employment, or towards a rental deposit, moving van, or other homeware essentials, and everything in between.
Donations come from people in the local community, and are shared out equally between participants, so that everyone reaches their fundraising target within an average of 17 days.
Having helped more than 1,300 homeless people “achieve their goals” since being founded in 2017, Beam isn’t just about funding, as it also has a team of caseworkers who provide one-to-one help with employment to those in need.
The caseworkers also lend a hand with searching for properties online, communicating with landlords, and booking house viewings, while Beam also works with a network of vetted landlords to help people find a home
The initiative also provides further support for at least six months after moving.
Over the next year, Manchester City Council says its pilot partnership with Beam will initially support 25 families who are living in temporary accommodation in the region, and move them into their own private rental homes.
Residents can be referred to the scheme by the Council’s housing teams, as well as other local services, and each person is assigned a caseworker from Beam, who then supports them on their journey into stable housing.
“No one chooses homelessness voluntarily,” admitted Councillor Joanna Midgley, Deputy Leader of Manchester City Council.
“And when it happens, it can be devastating, which is why we are looking at a range of solutions to help people secure affordable and decent homes in Manchester.
“Our new partnership with Beam is an innovative approach to improve people’s life chances, supporting them, where possible, into sustainable jobs allowing them to move out of temporary accommodation and into their own homes.