GUCFS: Simon Community Scotland

Glasgow University Charity Fashion Show (GUCFS) beyond the shoots, the Instagram’s, the graphics, and the spectacular of the show itself, are fundraising this year for the charity ‘Simon community Scotland’. Charity remains the focus of GUCFS, and this year they are fundraising for one, whose values are to combat the he causes and effects of homelessness across Glasgow and Scotland.

Simon CommunityThe charity, whose vision is that everyone should have a safe place to live and access to the support they need, focus on inclusion, and every individual is treated as exactly that, an individual.

In 2014 more than 36,000 people asked for help with homelessness across Scotland and many more are struggling on their own. The charity acknowledges the unique circumstances of everyone, and therefore creates a tailored response for individuals. They aim help beyond just providing home, but provide life skills, RSVP pet workshops, period poverty points-to allow homeless people access to sanitary products, and group skills development sessions. Simon Community aim see beyond a person’s current or past circumstances, and recognize their inherent value, worth and potential as human beings.

As Christmas looms and spirits rise, the problem and hardship of homelessness is worsened as winter also draws in, hard and fast. The biting negative temperatures which we complain about on the day-to-day, threaten the health and the lives of those sleeping rough. Stay Warm, Stay Safe is the heading of Simon Community Scotland’s most recent campaign to help people on the street whose priorities are far from the Christmas-mania and sparkly lights of the festive markets. But whose lives are at risk of hypothermia and cold weather related illness’s. People who are homeless or begging are not often active. Sometimes people will sit at the same begging pitch all day in freezing and wet conditions. Many of the people on the streets have poor health as a result of the survival lifestyle they live in and poor nutrition, diet, smoking, inactivity, little access to healthcare, stress, trauma, and substance misuse, all of which contribute to a lower level of resilience to the cold.

Christmas is a time for giving, and that means more than just giving a few coins here and there. Simon Community have street team and go out on the cold winter nights offering medical; support, and give dry clothes socks and shoes to those suffering on the streets.

You can help to by knowing the early signs of hypothermia, which include:

  • shivering
  • cold and pale skin
  • slurred speech
  • fast breathing
  • tiredness
  • confusion

Following this, when body temperature reaches below 32 degrees, people may pass out and stop moving at all. If you see this in anyone sleeping rough, Simon Community Scotland and GUCFS urge you call 999, or the Glasgow helpline at 0800 027 7466.

Glasgow University Charity Fashion Show are working to help combat this and raise funds to support the hard work of this charity. So far, members of the society have gone abseiling, participated in ‘Jailbreak’ climbed munros, baked cakes, run 100 miles, walked the kilt walk, and held quizzes, all to contribute to the charity. GUCFS will continue to raise money until the show on February the 23rd.

Within all this fundraising, the society hope to increase awareness of the problem of homelessness in Glasgow, and the valuable and hard work of Simon Community Scotland in combatting the effects and causes of homelessness in Glasgow, particularly in the long harsh winter months. Think of people on the streets when it gets cold this year and remember to give, to more than just your loved ones this Christmas.

From GUCFS: Help us, help them this Christmas and give more than just a sparing glance or some spare change, let’s work together to help those living on the streets ‘Stay Warm and Stay Safe’ this winter and support those sleeping on the streets to make changes and overcome their problems. Click here to donate!


-Sarah Findlay




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