Wirral group aims to combat isolation this Christmas

Although Christmas is the merriest time of year for lots of people, it can be the loneliest and most difficult for others.

One local group, Rek 41 CIC, is determined to help people through what can be a tough few days, so they are gearing up to feed and entertain hundreds of vulnerable residents over the festive period.

Based in central Birkenhead, Rek 41 (their name stands for recreation and recovery and 41 is part of their postcode) is dedicated to helping people who are struggling to make ends meet, with a particular focus on supporting people who are recovering from alcohol and substance misuse.

Rek 41 is one of 49 local organisations to receive funding earlier this month to provide food and welfare support.

The Leader of Wirral Council, Cllr Paul Stuart, called into their premises on Hamilton Street to hear about their plans. He said, “Christmas can bring lots of extra personal and financial pressures – it’s very easy to feel we should be having the most amazing time and spending lots of money which, for many reasons, is not possible or realistic for everyone.

“It’s great to know that Rek 41 will be providing so much support for vulnerable residents over the holiday, including an alcohol-free social club with free hot meals, hamper deliveries for low income families, a discounted shop offering lots of food staples, and even Christmas dinner for around 100 residents who otherwise might not get one.”

The CEO of Rek41, Rob Cumine, said, “We all need to socialise now and again, but this can be very difficult for some people, either because they have little or no money, or because they need to have a safe space away from drinks and drugs.

“Staff and volunteers at our alcohol-free social club will be working hard over the break to combat isolation and make sure people have food and some of the basics, so that they can have an enjoyable Christmas like everyone else.

“If you, or someone you know, needs a bit of help or company, and are interested in joining us for Christmas dinner from 1-4pm on Christmas Day (with hot food available until 9pm), or Boxing Day lunch from 1pm, please check out our Facebook page  for details and come along to The Copperfield, on Hamilton Street, just off Hamilton Square.”

Information about food and other support available from dozens of other groups across Wirral over Christmas and beyond is posted on the Wirral Infobank website

The Wirral Council website  also has lots of information about food and fuel support if you are struggling. You can also call the helpline on 0151 606 2005 if you are unable to go online.   

Image: Rek41 CEO, Rob Cumine, and Events Manager, Paula Powell

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