It will be at least the autumn before the affected families can move back into their homes, which is why the Churches Together in Cockermouth has launched its Street Angel’s project which involves volunteers visiting every flood affected street and offering friendship and support to both householders and businesses. Every volunteer has been assigned a high visibility vest with the Churches Together logo on the back to identify them and to safeguard against imposters.
One hundred vests were supplied and printed at a special discount by local company Recognition Express which specialises in branded clothing and promotional products. Owner Neal Benson has supported the Street Angel’s appeal since the outset and has already produced hundreds of ‘Bounce Back’ badges which have been sold in local shops to raise cash for flood victims.
Said Neal Benson: “As part of the Cumbrian community I think it is important to help out as much as I can, particularly since I was lucky enough not be directly affected by the floods. The jackets help the volunteers stand out from the crowd and families can be re-assured that the man or woman at the door is a bonifide Street Angel. Because I have my own printing facilities on-site I was able to print up the vests very quickly so that Churches Together Street Angels Project could get them distributed as soon as possible.”
The project is being co-ordinated by Reverend Wendy Sanders who is a team rector for the Cockermouth area and Kathleen Gibson who is the administrator for the flood relief office. Revd Sanders said: “We have been delighted by the generosity of people throughout Cumbria and from other parishes throughout the UK. We thank Neal for his on-going support. ”