During the winter, Matthew, a student at Holy Cross College in Bury, has quite a different Saturday night to most young people.
For the last two years, between November and April, Matthew spends his Saturday nights (from 7pm til 1am) volunteering on the Winter Watch. That’s a programme run by local Christian organisation Urban Outreach that helps the homeless in Bolton, Greater Manchester.
Each week Matthew helps to prepare and then serve food to the homeless guests. The numbers attending the outreach can be large: between 50 and 70. And ages range from 16 to 90.
Matthew spends time speaking with the guests who use the homeless shelter. He enjoys listening to their stories and sees the guests as friends. He also enjoys playing board games with them. He is respected by his peers for his charity work, many of whom could not imagine giving up a Saturday night, every Saturday for six months to volunteer likle him.
What they said: “Matthew gives his time freely and willingly to help those less fortunate than himself. When he talks of what he does, he does so humbly and with humility” - Sarah Burgess, fellow student