Want to know a little bit more about who we are?
What do we do?
How did we got started?
Then look no further!
Q - When did C4C start?
A - In September 2013 Risha and Hendrix Lancaster started Coffee4Craig the day after Rishas’ brother, Craig White, died while street homeless of a heroin overdose in Cardiff.
Q - Who was Craig?
A - Craig White was Risha’s younger brother, he was born on the 24th of April 1974 in Cardiff. He had many jobs over the years but poor mental health and substance misuse along with a difficult upbringing left him unable to cope with life.
Q - Why coffee and not tea or hot chocolate?
A - The day after Craig died Risha put out a social media post asking any of her friends to buy a cuppa for anyone they see on the streets who is homeless. This caught on and became Coffee4Craig within 24 hours, besides Tea4Craig hasn’t got the same ring and Hot-Chocolate4Craig is just daft!
What do we do?
Q - What does Coffee4Craig do for the homeless?
A - As a charity, we offer a 7 day a week drop-in from our base, The Meanwhile, Unit 5, 153 Great Ducie Street. Manchester, M3 1FB. We are open for anyone who is street homeless between the hours of 18.00 - 20.00 Monday to Friday & 17.00 - 19.00 Saturday and Sunday. We also have a drop-in on Thursdays between 11.00 - 14.00 in partnership with Street Paws.
During office hours we operate an advice service, some of the staff team are located at other services and carry out support sessions on the street including working at the Street Engagement Hub with GMP.
Q - What does the C4C drop-in offer?
A - The drop-in offers respite from the streets, hot food cooked by our very own chef, showers, clean clothing, toiletries, haircuts, conversation with staff and volunteers, snacks, hot drinks, water refill point, medical support, emergency crisis intervention and advice.
Q - What about during the winter, do you offer shelter for people?
A - Coffee4Craig does not directly offer accommodation (yet) but we do support the Homeless Partnership and MCC to offer an out of hours service for referrals and allocations into accommodation when the temperature drops below zero. This is commonly called SWEP (severe weather emergency protocol) or CWP (cold weather procedure) Since 2016 we have gone above and beyond to provide an opportunity for people on the streets to access emergency accommodation to preserve life during minus temperatures. Historically we have run night shelters in church halls, provided staff to support existing housing providers to take in more individuals, funded hotels and worked through the night to provide support when it is a matter of life or death.
Q - Does C4C work with other charities and groups?
A - Yes, absolutely!! Coffee4Craig is a founder member of The CoR Network (Coalition of Relief). As a network CoR was instrumental in the inception of;
1. The Manchester Homelessness Charter
2. The Manchester Homelessness Partnership
3. The Real Change Manchester (formally The Big Change Mcr)
4. The ongoing open dialogue between Manchester City Council and the 3rd sector.
We also supported streetsupport.net from the beginning, Hendrix worked with Manchester City Council to produce a street giving and support guideline and best practice format for any new groups wanting to start giving support to people experiencing homelessness.
We are in attendance and represented at various meetings with professional bodies, other charities etc…Including being on strategic and scrutiny boards;
GMCA - The Mayor for Manchester
GMP - Greater Manchester Police
MCC - Manchester City Council
GMMH - Greater Manchester Mental Health Body
CityCo and other charities we work with;
On the Out, Mustard Tree, Barnabus, Booth Centre, Lifeshare, CentrePoint, Reach out to the Community, NHS - Urban Village & MRI, Street Paws, Riverside Housing, CGL and various housing providers.
We have also been invited to speak at various events or forums including;
The European Parliament 3 times,
The local council scrutiny meetings, Health, Homelessness and Housing,
The Samaritans Annual Conference,
The Lord Mayor Celebration Dinner,
The annual conference for housing,
Q - Do you know work with any corporate organisations?
A - Yes! We love working with the business sector! We offer opportunities for CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) all the time and have support from;
BUPA, Amazon, Tesco, Gibbs, ASDA, BooHooMan, BNI, Dept, Honest Mobile, Sainsbury’s, Masato Beanies, Stand4Socks and various local independent Manchester companies like the fantastic Manchester Shop! We are always ready to take on CSR partners.
Q - Do you have an online presence?
A - We have a great social media presence, we use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn….Plus our website www.coffee4craig.org We also have newsletters and reporting on drop-in stats in an easy on the eyes format.
Q - Do you have fundraisers?
A - We have fundraisers who support us all year round and we have a fantastic fundraising pack along with the ability to provide T-Shirts, Running vests and so on for anyone who gets in touch with us when organising an event. We are always looking for fundraisers to up the anti with their crazy ideas for events and also good folks to run 5k, marathons or walk, swim, ride and sleep out in honour of Craig and the work C4C do in his memory to help others in similar positions. Download a copy of our fundraising pack here.
Q - Do you have paid staff?
A - We do, at this time we have paid team members ranging from 10 hrs a week to 40 hrs a week contracts. The vast majority of this cost is met by ring fenced grants & funding.
What we do differently though (the only charity that do) and what Risha and Hendrix are most proud of is;
- Every member of the team is paid the same hourly rate, yes including both Hendrix & Risha - They are paid the same as the chef, the cleaner and the guest services manager/operations manager and support staff…. Nobody has a higher worth than their colleague!
- We are an accredited Living Wage employer.
- Each member is entitled to 1 day per payroll as a ‘wellbeing day’. 1-hour notice that for that day they are not able, willing or ready to come to work. This helps with life and work balance and we all have those days that we just cannot adult!
- Each member is treated as an equal with an equal voice, which includes volunteers.
- We have a majority LGBT workforce.
Q - But are you an equal opportunities employer?
A - We are truly an equal opportunities employer, currently, we employ people who are diagnosed with various conditions that may affect their ability to work in a ‘standard workplace’ like; Epilepsy, Aspergers, EUPD, Anxiety, PTSD and or a variety of severe & enduring mental health concerns: Dyslexia, Dyspraxia and or Dyscalcular, ADHD and Severe autism
Q - What about the media? Do you work with any media outlets?
A - We always like to work with any of the mainstream and local media and also support students while they are studying media-related courses. We have worked with The MEN, BBC, ITV, RT News, GB News, Local news channels, Kyles Files, Inside Out, Tonight program and been interviewed by; Professor Green, Jeremy Kyle, Victoria Derbyshire, Prue Leith, Bez (Happy Mondays) who is also our patron, Louis Harding, various radio personalities like Mike Sweeney, Emma Goswell and lots of other presenters etc…
We have appeared in every national newspaper, lots of magazines and also The Big Issue.
C4C are featured in various documentaries that are available on our YouTube .