Charity Vision Care for Homeless People (VCHP), which provides free sight tests and spectacles to homeless people across the UK, has received a grant that will enable it to expand the service that it offers across London.
The charity will use the £37,100 donation from The City of London Corporation’s charitable funder, City Bridge Trust, to employ additional staff and establish mobile clinics that will allow it to reach more people across the capital.
The charity has three clinics across London – at Spitalfields, Marylebone and Shepherd’s Bush – which are run by a team of volunteers, including an optometrist, dispensing optician and clinic assistants.
Commenting on the donation, chair of the City Bridge Trust committee, Alison Gowman, said: “VCHP is a really special charity providing a service that is completely life changing. For someone who is homeless to move forward with their life, they need the tools to do it – and this charity is providing this vital resource.”
She added that while thousands of people are already being helped through this service, “there are many more vulnerable individuals who are currently not being reached that would really benefit from this service, and our grant will help to change this.”
Manager of VCHP, David Brown, added: “Thanks to the City Bridge Trust grant, we will be able to employ a volunteer manager to support our existing volunteers and also develop our volunteer teams. We make a very significant difference to peoples,’ lives with a small income, so the donation will go a very long way.”
City Bridge Trust is London’s largest independent grant giver, making grants of £20 million a year to tackle disadvantage across the capital. It has awarded around 7500 grants, worth more than £360 million, since it was established in 1995.