WREXHAM Council is discouraging the public from making donations directly to homeless people – but one group has said it will continue to do so.
A Wrexham Council spokesman said giving money and food to homeless people living at the Groves might mean they use it to buy drugs and the donations remove the incentive to work with agencies which are trying to help them.
The advice from the council is to contact Ty Croeso in Grosvenor Road, which is run by homeless charity The Wallich, to find out how they can help.
But Tracey Jones, who runs the Help Wrexham Homeless Facebook group with Nicola Price and Angie Hammons, said she didn’t understand the council’s advice and that the group will continue to drop off donations of food and clothing to the site.
She said: “I don’t understand that – they are human beings, winter is coming and it is getting cooler now.
“We will continue to drop off food and clothes, I don’t see that we’re causing any issues.
“We’re not causing any untoward behaviour – we’re allowing them to be fed and warm and highlighting that Wrexham does have a problem with homelessness.”
She added that the group does encourage all of those living at the Groves site to make use of Ty Nos and other facilities in Wrexham.
A Wrexham Council spokesman said: “The current use of the Groves is well-known and we know that people want to do what they can to help out.
“Some people have already set up collections of supplies, food and money to support the vulnerable people currently on the site.
“We completely understand and respect people’s drive to help out those in need.
“After all, the service users and vulnerable people involved are human beings and it’s only natural that people want to help.
“But it is strongly advised that you not give food or money directly to those in need.
“It might help them in the shorter term, but in the longer term, it means they have money to spend on drugs, which only locks them in to a dangerous and damaging habit – and nobody wants that.
“And if they get money and food from members of the public, there’s no incentive for them to engage
with agencies that can support them long-term.
“Instead, consider giving what support you can to a charity which has the resources and expertise needed to help these individuals and tackle these problems in the long-term.”
Last week Cllr David Griffiths, lead member for housing, confirmed that a sanitation and waste facilities including a portable toilet and a skip were delivered to the site.
Tracey Jones welcomed the arrival of the facilities, adding: “It is giving them a bit of dignity back but it is also nice for the surrounding houses.
“It can’t be nice for them to have people defecating in hedges.”