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A group of young adults from St Brigid’s Youth Club in Belfast brought some Christmas cheer to Utility Street Hostel for Homeless Men this weekend, the culmination of a year-long project to gather presents for the emergency accommodation project.

Youth Club Leader, Jarlath McAllister, who coordinated the project says that the young people have demonstrated unprecedented enthusiasm and commitment, gathering everything from scarves and hats to sweets and toiletries over the year.

He said:

“We have spent days sorting out all the gifts to suit the age ranges of the residents in the hostel – we have been up to our ears in shoe boxes for the past three weeks. It’s great to see the young people motivated and they have really astounded us with their sincerity and commitment to the cause.

“It has made us focus on the real meaning of Christmas – an obligation on us all to remember to reach out to those who are in difficult and challenging situations at this time of the year.”

Manager of Utility Hostel, Edmund McCullough, said: “The group from St Brigid’s Youth Club is an outstanding example of kindness and compassion, they are a credit to their leaders and mentors. We simply cannot express our gratitude enough, the whole event has given everyone in the hostel a tremendous boost of confidence and positivity.”