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Candidate helps out at Thetford hostel

PUBLISHED: 09:37 17 February 2010 | UPDATED: 21:56 07 July 2010

A PARLIAMENTARY candidate spent the night helping out at a homeless hostel in Thetford which was established after the death of a polish man in his tent last year.

A PARLIAMENTARY candidate spent the night helping out at a homeless hostel in Thetford which was established after the death of a polish man in his tent last year.

Labour parliamentary candidate for south west Norfolk, Peter Smith, volunteered to help at the Salvation Army hostel on Magdalen Street.

The hostel was established at the end of January in the wake of the death of Mariusz Fidos, 33, from Poland of suspected hypothermia when he was sleeping in a tent at Barnham Common in Thetford in December last year.

Mr Smith, who is one of many people who have volunteered to help, said: “It was already freezing when I arrived at 9pm. I met the six homeless men staying there as they were about to begin their hot evening meal.

“They were polite, friendly, helpful and clearly appreciative of the efforts being made by so many volunteers to ensure their wellbeing.

“They helped clear up after the meal, set up their beds and, after watching Forrest Gump, went to bed. After a peaceful night, another volunteer arrived just before 7am to cook breakfast and, after washing up, I said my goodbyes and headed off home.”

The Salvation Army supported by Thetford Christians Together and in conjunction with Breckland Council, will offer help to the homeless in severe weather conditions for the rest of this winter. The situation will then be reviewed in the autumn for next winter.

When temperatures are around zero degrees anyone who finds people sleeping rough can contact the Salvation Army on 01362 638229.


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