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Wirral community diamond shines

A volunteer with Birkenhead's Charles Thompson Mission is celebrating after winning a community hero award and £1,000 donation.

Amy Stanley, pictured receiving a cheque from competition organisers, has been recognised for her work with the Mission which supports the homeless in Birkenhead . She has raised more than £25,000 for the charity in the last 18 months through overnight sleep-outs and car boot sales.

The Mission was founded in 1892 and provides practical support with food, clothing and showers as well as access to counselling, nurses and dentist services. It holds drop in sessions from Monday to Friday, with between 70-100 people visiting daily.

It also offers a food parcel service along with children's trips throughout the year and Christmas parcels for families in need during the festive season.

Amy, who lives in Wirral, said: “This will make a huge difference to the Mission. We’re only a small charity which relies entirely on donations. At the moment, we use a volunteer’s van to transport and collect donations, so the £1,000 will go towards purchasing our own van.

“It’ll also help us to buy essential items such as clothing, food and toiletries, and contribute towards the costs of finding accommodation for the homeless.”

The nationwide search for 'community diamonds' was launched by Swinton Group, as part of its diamond anniversary to find 10 people who make a difference to their local communities. Presenting the cheque, the team at Swinton’s headquarters also organised a collection of tinned and non-perishable food for the Mission.