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Homelessness charity receives donation from Essex Freemasons

Homelessness charity CHESS has been operating throughout the pandemic.

Members presenting CHESS’s Barbara Buxton with their donation.

Submitted by Essex Freemasons

Essex Freemasons in Maldon, Essex, made a helpful delivery to a homelessness charity.

Members of The Wheel of Fellowship Lodge delivered bottled water, snacks, soft drinks, treats, toiletries and items of clothing to the CHESS Centre in Chelmsford. Brethren of the lodge donated the items.

CHESS’s outreach service covers Brentwood, Chelmsford, Braintree, Maldon and Rochford. Donated gifts are distributed by volunteers and are much appreciated by people experiencing homelessness.

The charity’s overall goal is to help people move on in a positive way with their life by supporting them to identify and resolve issues that have caused homelessness. The volunteers, lead by CHESS manager Barbara Buxton, take a holistic approach when working with someone and look at all areas of life, not just housing.

Volunteers connect with people referred through Streetlink to see what help and support they need. This might be practical help, such as food, water, sleeping bag/tent and local services available. They can also identify what support is needed, including accessing emergency accommodation, helping access longer-term accommodation and support services.

CHESS has a nine-bedroom initial property and a three-bed for those entering through the Outreach team. Both facilities have been open during the pandemic.

They have a shelter that provides an initial stay of 28 days, while the organisation gets to know someone and identify issues that need to be addressed.

A spokesperson for The Wheel of Fellowship, said: “This is a local charity that does so much good work in the community that the members of the lodge wanted to do something in support.”


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