Local people have chosen to help homeless patients at The Royal London Hospital, donating £3,800 to charity Pathway through the sale of Tesco carrier bags.
Throughout November and December, shoppers at Tesco supermarkets across the City used tokens to ‘vote’ for organisations who they wanted to receive the funds. Homeless charity Pathway came out on top.
Dr Peter Buchman, Clinical Lead for the Pathway homeless team at The Royal London Hospital said: “This will make a huge difference for homeless people in Tower Hamlets, funding ‘Dignity in Care’ packages containing much needed items such as toiletries and clean warm clothes for when patients are discharged. I am delighted that local people recognise and support the vital work of our colleagues at Pathway, who help us to provide life changing care to our most vulnerable patients.”
Tesco’s Bags of Help uses money raised from the sale of carrier bags to fund thousands of projects in communities across the UK. Locally, The Royal London Pathway team - one of six teams in London hospitals - helps homeless patients find accommodation, sort out financial problems and reconnect with lost family and loved ones.
Without the help of the Pathway teams many hospitals would be forced to discharge homeless patients to sleep rough after treatment, where many become trapped in a cycle of illness and readmission to hospital.
The donation will make sure patients have toiletries and pyjamas during their stay, clean warm clothes when they leave hospital, bus fare to attend appointments with council housing offices and hostels, and a starter pack of bedding and crockery if they are moving into a home for the first time.
Pathway CEO, Alex Bax said: “At a time when homelessness is rising, we're grateful that people in Tower Hamlets have shown how much they care for their local homeless hospital team. The Royal London Pathway Team does amazing, life saving work; this donation will help homeless people in the local community get life back on track.”