John Lewis Partnership volunteers transform central London hostel

Often rough sleepers in Central London have been on the streets for many years and may be struggling with addiction, serious health problems, or mental health issues.

At the Bruce House scheme in London, individuals with these complex needs are helped to develop life skills, find work, and overcome drug or alcohol issues, so that they can eventually live independently.

People entering a hostel need to feel welcome and comfortable so that they don’t return to the streets. But as there are few resources and hostel staff have to concentrate on the welfare of the residents, tasks like redecorating rooms fall by the wayside.

We were therefore pleased to arrange the refurbishment of communal rooms at Bruce House with the help of John Lewis Partnership staff who generously provided the paint, materials, and new furniture chosen by the hostel’s residents. Six volunteers from John Lewis Partnership redecorated the recreation area and a side office that will eventually become an IT suite.

With a bit of help from staff and residents, the team painted the woodwork and walls of the two high-ceilinged rooms. There was not enough time to finish building all of the furniture, so a couple of the volunteers will come back to put the finishing touches.

Appeals Manager Tracey Mcreadie said “I’m quite amazed at how much we got done! It’s been great to meet people I’d never have met otherwise.”

Business Analyst Francesca Kruszel commented, “It’s a lot of fun, and something different… it’s good to do something for others.”

Huge thanks to the John Lewis Partnership and the staff who gave up their time, in particular, Lucy Kent, who was instrumental in putting the day together. What you achieved will help to support people in need to change their lives.