Soup kitchen marks its first an­niver­sary

Macclesfield Express - - CHARITY ROUND-UP -

A PROJECT which gives meals and support to the home­less has cel­e­brated its first birth­day.

Tree­house is run out of Elim Christian Life Cen­tre, on Par­son­age Street, and ev­ery Satur­day from 5 to 8pm it serves dozens of peo­ple a meal and hot drinks.

The project, which is now linked to The Samaritans, Ad­dullem float­ing drug and al­co­hol support and four churches in Mac­cles­field, was started by kind­hearted nurse Louise Wil­liamson.

She and other vol­un­teers cel­e­brated the an­niver­sary with Mac­cles­field MP David Rutley.

After a buf­fet meal at the an­niver­sary meet­ing, there was a re­port on the progress made by the group dur­ing its in­au­gu­ral year, in­clud­ing an up­date on the num­ber of ser­vice users, and the yearly fi­nances.

After the party Mr Rutley said: “The work done by Louise and the other vol­un­teers at Tree­house is greatly val­ued, and I would like to thank and con­grat­u­late them all for reach­ing this im­por­tant mile­stone.

“The ser­vice which the group of­fers is a real suc­cess and is greatly ap­pre­ci­ated, par­tic­u­larly on th­ese dark, cold win­ter nights.”

Louise, from Mac­cles­field, set up the soup kitchen while study­ing for a nurs­ing de­gree and run­ning a busy home with her hus­band Daniel and chil­dren Bradley, 11 and Emily, seven.

After work­ing a va­ri­ety of jobs, from bar­maid to work­ing in a nurs­ery, Louise en­rolled as a stu­dent para­medic but had to quit for per­sonal rea­sons. The ex­pe­ri­ence stirred a love of nurs­ing and she started her de­gree. In

To boost her stud­ies Louise be­came a vol­un­teer at Drop-In on Duke Street, which sup­ports 12 to 25-yearolds, and Street An­gels, which pa­trol the town cen­tre keep­ing peo­ple safe.

In Novem­ber she was awarded a first class de­gree and two prizes from the Univer­sity of Ch­ester.

Louise said: “Open­ing Tree­house has of­fered support to in­di­vid­u­als in the Mac­cles­field area, not only by pro­vid­ing a hearty meal and hot drinks but also good company in a safe en­vi­ron­ment.

“Each in­di­vid­ual that comes along gets some­thing pos­i­tive from at­tend­ing. The support we have re­ceived has been over­whelm­ing, which pro­vides an ex­cel­lent com­mu­nity spirit.”

●● David Rutley MP meets Tree­house vol­un­teers at its first an­niver­sary cel­e­bra­tions

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