Established 2005 Registered Charity No. 1110656

Scottish Charity Register No. SC043760

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February – March 2024 : The little things READ ONLINE



May 18 2009
A seasonal good-luck story about an East European teenager Dear Sir, I'm concerned about the way some people talk about East Europeans on the street. I recently came across Frank, a 19-year-old who was trafficked to England with the promise of work. In his homeland, the pay is about a third of the UK minimum wage; so he arrived in England with hope in his heart, planning to send money home so his epileptic mother could buy medication. Sadly, when he arrived, his 'friends' took his passport and forced him to go shoplifting, though he was terrified and unused to stealing. He was caught. Was he a decoy for the more deft operators? Frank spent some time in prison, and was eventually released. With only a few coins in his pocket, but with a list of potential options, he started to search for help. Fortunately, a volunteer from another homeless charity who had directed him to Hackney 180¬? went back to check that Frank was okay, discovered that the office was closed, and gave Frank directions to 'his' charity and a couple of quid. The charity normally assists only people over 25 who can claim benefits and refers people like Frank to a hostel. With no money, Frank's luck was not looking up... Fortunately, a volunteer was willing to have him to stay for a few days, which gave the team breathing space to explore other options. Frank mentioned he was looking for work and was willing to do anything. Another volunteer browsed a few websites, and it looks as though a job working with animals on a farm may have come up. Luck, coincidence, or maybe serendipity? A good story for Christmas, anyway! Nigel Dear Nigel, We're always happy to print positive letters - we get too few. Editor