Heckington man overwhelmed by generosity of others in campaign to help homeless

Michael Jolly, of Heckington, and his fiance Rebecca Manzi. EMN-191220-145821001
Michael Jolly, of Heckington, and his fiance Rebecca Manzi. EMN-191220-145821001

A painter and decorator is overwhelmed by the generosity of Sleaford area people after he launched an online appeal to help the homeless in the run up to Christmas and the winter months.

Michael Jolly, of Heckington, said he was moved to do something while on a trip to Lincoln with his fiancee, Rebecca Manzi.

Some of the donations Michael Jolly has collected so far. EMN-191220-145810001

Some of the donations Michael Jolly has collected so far. EMN-191220-145810001

He said: “Every time we go out we try to help someone, whether it is food or clothing, and there was a guy there who looked like he was about to cry. He said, ‘I just want socks - my feet are so cold’.”

Compelled to act, Michael launched a Help The Homeless appeal on Facebook for clothing, bedding, camping equipment, food and toiletries, with an amazing response.

Thanking locals he said: “I have no more room left at home as both my spare room and shed are full.”

He has now arranged with Newton Fallowell estate agents in town to use an upstairs room for more storage and people can drop items off there or he can pick them up when messaged.

Michael Jolly's shed crammed with donations for the homeless. EMN-191224-165953001

Michael Jolly's shed crammed with donations for the homeless. EMN-191224-165953001

Michael has also been in contact with homeless charity, Framework, which looks out for people living on the streets and ex-prisoners and organises rehoming. They have offered facilities and support and will hand out Michael’s supplies where needed.

A woman has designed a logo for the project to add to awareness leaflets and he has offers from mums willing to cook the food donations to hand out.

He said: “I didn’t think it would get as big as it has done in just three weeks. It is just essentials for the winter. I have clothes. toiletries, sanitary products, sleeping bags, yoga mats, pillows and duvets. It is absolutely mind-blowing.

“I could not be happier.”