Hostels voted 'best way to help' at Christmas

Most people think that helping out in a hostel for the homeless is the best way to "make a difference this Christmas", according to a survey conducted by Volunteering England.

An online poll found that 39 per cent of respondents chose working in a homeless hostel as their preferred option, while 37 per cent of respondents opted for making a year-round commitment to volunteering as the best way to make a difference.

Staffing a helpline, organising a fundraising event and selling Christmas cards for good causes were considered less of a priority by respondents.

Justin Davis Smith, acting chief executive of Volunteering England, said: “Christmas is a time when many people think of helping others, and volunteering with the homeless can be a wonderful way of helping out at a time of increased need.”

Jane Eggleton, communications manager at homelessness charity Crisis, said: “Volunteers are the lifeblood of Crisis Open Christmas and without them the event would not be the success that it is – more than 5,000 general volunteers are needed to run the centres.”

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