As the relaxation in coronavirus restrictions eases across the area one local charity says it has never stopped throughout the entire lockdown.
Tonia Nixon, the founder of TEES (Together, Engage, Encourage, Support) CIO a charity which mainly operates in the Redcar and Cleveland area said: “Demand for our services has gone through the roof! But lockdown meant we weren’t able to trade and raise the funding to become self-sufficient. Nevertheless, a skeleton volunteer team worked seven days a week from the first lockdown to date.”
The coronavirus pandemic forced the small charity to extend its services but lockdown restrictions meant it was very difficult to help those in need.
“The relaxation of the rules means so much to us,” said Tonia. “We can reopen the Hub where we sell our wares to the public, and we can run meetings and events in the building,” she added.
One of the early aims of TEES was to support people in period or incontinence poverty, but the charity now provides all manner of services – delivering meals, providing clothing, supporting those with mental health or addiction problems. Bedding, curtains and furniture can also be provided.
Along with the reopening of its doors, a further boost has come with a donation of £1,000 from ICL Boulby. “Funding is always a problem for us so this is very welcome,” said Tonia.
The money will help tackle the big increase in demand for their support services, as Tonia explained: “There has been a 300% increase in requests for our help and that demand is growing steadily. We find that the main problem is the loss of a personal connection. Most people are really in need of a conversation, someone to listen to and a place to meet,” she said.
Find out more about TEES and how you can access their support systems on www.teescommunity.co.uk.