Homeless Project Scotland
1892. Colin McInnes
1893. Fraser Riddell
Colin McInnes and Fraser Riddell, from South Lanarkshire, founded the ‘Homeless Project Scotland’ in 2019, and each year since have provided over 130,000 meals to homeless and vulnerable individuals in Glasgow, Edinburgh, and South and North Lanarkshire.
The pair initially set out simply with backpacks filled with flasks and sandwiches on the streets of Glasgow and Edinburgh to help anyone struggling to access food and water. Their efforts quickly grew to take in more volunteers to support wider distribution of food, essential toiletries and warm clothing to people in need. There are now hundreds of volunteers supporting ‘Homeless Project Scotland’, many of whom have been given life-saving medical training to help respond to emergency situations. In 2021 Colin, Fraser and their volunteers ran 144 soup kitchens, provided 55,000 litres of hot food, topped up over 200 mobile phones, delivered well over 2000 toiletry packages, and worked with 32 local authorities to help house homeless individuals or those with drug and alcohol issues, dealing with over 40 referrals per day. Their soup kitchen at the Hielanman’s Umbrella in Glasgow is currently feeding over 300 people a week with over 1,000 hot meals, and the project has also built up a fleet of vans to collect furniture and distribute these to people who need help with setting up a home.
In a personal letter to Colin, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:
“I am lost in admiration for how you have served over 130,000 meals to homeless and vulnerable people across Scotland.
“Alongside Fraser, you have helped people at their lowest ebb by giving them essential hot food, toiletries and mobile phones. More importantly, you are giving support and dignity to those in need.”
In a personal letter to Fraser, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:
“One of the most uplifting aspects of the last two years has been the outpouring of community spirit we have seen across the UK. Alongside Colin, you have brought this spirit to tens of thousands of people by delivering meals, warm clothes and toiletries to those in need.
“Your sheer determination and dedication has taken ‘Homeless Project Scotland’, which initially started with taking backpacks filled with flasks to the streets of Glasgow, to distributing over 130,000 meals to homeless people since 2019.”
“I am delighted to receive this award on behalf of ‘Homeless Project Scotland’. This Project would not succeed without the wonderful team of volunteers who all dedicate so much of their time and work tirelessly to helping the homeless and vulnerable in our community across Scotland. It is a great honour for me to accept this award on everyone’s behalf. I am very humbled that Boris Johnson has taken the time to look at our wonderful Charity and give us recognition. We will continue to serve 1,000 meals a week to our homeless and the most vulnerable in our community.”
“It is humbling and exciting to have been recognised to receive this prestigious award. I would like to thank all the volunteers who help us make the difference and demonstrate the impact we all make on our communities across Scotland. Thank you to Boris Johnson for taking the time to appreciate me and our Charity.”