Schoolboy donates 78 filled rucksacks to charity to help the homeless in Luton

A ten-year-old boy has been praised by a Luton charity after he delivered 78 rucksacks to them to give to the homeless.

By The Newsroom
Tuesday, 8th January 2019, 2:58 pm
Updated Thursday, 10th January 2019, 2:50 pm

Alex P.S spent months gathering donations, mainly toiletries, to fill the bags to give to Signposts, the charity provides hostel accommodation for homeless people.

This is the second time Alex has made the delivery, last Christmas he gave 19 bags to the charity and at the time, he hoped to donate 30 this year, but thanks to donations from businesses and the public he has been able to beat his target.

Alex said: “This year I set out to do more rucksacks for the homeless as I enjoyed it so much and got to see how many people it really helped.

Alex and his foster parents took the bags to Signposts

“I would not have been able to do this without the support of my foster parents.

“We wrote to lots of companies to show what I did last year and asked if they could help in any way.

“John Lewis Head Office got in contact with us and put us in contact with Val Fowler at the Welwyn branch, she invited us down and discussed how they could help.

“I think she was surprised when I got my business plan out and started talking about quantities and items and deadlines.

Alex with the bags

“She agreed the partners would help as part of a community Christmas project, which was amazing. Then the ball started rolling with Caddington and Slip End Scouts, Cubs and Beavers collecting jumpers and toothbrushes and tooth paste.

“Friends of Clare’s and Fred’s donated shower gels, sanitary items, toiletries, gloves, hats and money to buy the rucksacks.”

Last year Alex won the Gordon Wellstead Award in Scouting for his efforts in helping the charity.

He said: “Winning that award made me want to achieve more this year, I was on a mission and wanted to do more bags, I achieved this and more than tripled last year’s effort by collecting and making up 78 rucksacks.

Alex won the award in Scouting for his efforts last year

“I am so happy and quite proud.”

Alex and his foster parents delivered the bags to the charity’s Start Over Shelter on Wednesday, January 2.

The ten-year-old added: “Phyl who we met last year was so happy and could not believe how many bags we had done, I also got to meet Kevin Porter CEO and Tim Archer, the director at Signposts.

“I have had an amazing experience, and knowing I have helped 78 people this year with some essentials makes me extremely happy.”

Donations for the bags

Kevin Porter, CEO at Signposts, said: “Sometimes I’m overwhelmed by the actions of children, last year at a time of huge sorrow, Alex led and organised donations packed in 19 rucksacks for people who are homeless.

“Alex has taken things to another level this year arriving at Signposts with 78 rucksacks.

“We are so inspired by this amazing boy, listening to how he approached retailers and attended business meetings at John Lewis prepared with his business plan and used his local scout hut to pack the bags as there were too many to fit in his home. On behalf of the people who will receive the rucksacks and the Signposts team, thank you Alex, from the bottom of our hearts, you are an inspiration to us all.”

Alex has wrote letters to everyone that has helped and donated, in particular Watton-at-Stone Guide Group, Tewin Brownies, Fire Guard Services, Millers Garden Buildings, Mercer and Hole Accountants and Caddington Scout Hut.

Alex’s foster mum, Clare Evans, added: “I am so overwhelmed by the support from businesses and the local communities, our friends and scouting and guiding families have all helped Alex achieve what he wanted to do this year

“It was daunting seeing the volume of products and items coming in but with support we managed to collect, organise, pack and deliver 78 rucksacks. Thank you to all that helped you truly are amazing.”