Emmaus Mossley open new bedrooms on World Homeless Day
Tuesday 11th October 2016 09:33 Community Mossley & Saddleworth News Posted by Adam Higgins

Homeless charity Emmaus Mossley officially opened new extra bedrooms at their store on World Homeless Day on Monday.

President Terry Waite CBE cut the ribbon to unveil the two new rooms, which will now enable Emmaus to support 26 formerly homeless people by providing them with a home and work in a community setting.

The charity sell donated and recycled furniture as well as household goods and vintage wares from their Longlands Mill base in Mossley.

Terry, 77, originally from Styal in Cheshire, is a long-time supporter of people facing social exclusion and knows all about being isolated.

This year marks the 25th anniversary since his release from captivity after being taken hostage in Lebanon and kept in solitary confinement for over four years.

Terry travelled five hours all the way from Suffolk for the grand opening but said he didn’t want to miss it and thanked everyone who made the new rooms possible.

Terry told the Reporter: “It’s always worth coming up for Emmaus. I’ve just seen the new addition to the community here which is very good.

“A lot of the work done by companions who live here and some of the firms who have supplied things have been gracious enough to make a donation and have given some of the bathroom equipment and some of the carpeting.

“For that we are very grateful because Emmaus doesn’t expect people to come here and accept charity. The men who come to Emmaus come here to work for their own keep and to support the wider community. I think we can be proud of what they have done.”

terry-waite-cuts-the-ribbon-at-emmaus-mossley

Grand unveiling: Terry Waite CBE, president of Emmaus Mossley, cut the ribbon to open the new bedrooms

Terry had a look around the new rooms on his visit and was delighted with what he saw.

“The new rooms are splendid – they put Premier Inns to shame!” he joked.

Terry added: “They’re modest, nice and clean and don’t have to be ostentatious but when I was a young man I used to work up in Middlesbrough in my vocation I went to a homeless place.

“It was terrible, it was like a dosshouse. They lived in dormitories, it was worse than barracks in the army. Nowadays, what we try to do is give a homeless person a decent room which isn’t posh but it’s clean, nice and tidy.

“When you think the building used to be a mill, it’s now been converted all due to the fact local people believing in the project and saying we must do something and it shows if you put your mind to it you can make a change to the lives of people and in society.”

MP Jonathan Reynolds also went along for the unveiling and praised Terry for making the effort to give the charity the support it deserves.

He said: “I think Emmaus Mossley is one of the most important and best things in the whole borough. It’s my third or fourth visit and I’m always impressed with the personal stories I hear and the contribution made.

“It’s wonderful that we are expanding that with two extra bedrooms for two more companions now in and that Terry Waite has come to launch that.

“I think it’s an incredibly kind thing for him to do – he’s the president of Emmaus but it’s not an easy journey for him up here and it’s wonderful he can support it because this is an organisation that makes a massive difference and it really does deserve that support.”

World Homeless Day, held every year since 2010, draws attention to homeless people’s needs and provides opportunities for the community to get involved in responding to homelessness.

And Frances Hirst, Chair of Emmaus Mossley, said there was no better to celebrate the opening of the new rooms.

Frances said: “Emmaus is a growing UK wide movement and we are very pleased indeed that as winter approaches Emmaus Mossley has been able to increase the number of rooms we offer to formerly homeless people.”

To find out more about the charity, visit www.emmaus.org.uk/mossley.