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I, Daniel Blake star and North East business help homeless charity


A North East homeless charity is celebrating success with the star of I Daniel Blake, Dave Johns, agreeing to appear at its fundraising Gala Dinner and regional businesses rallying to give support.

North East Homeless which provides outreach support including food and clothing for people in need in central Newcastle, joined North East England Chamber of Commerce to get business support for its work with great results.

Fresh Start Events was one of the first members to help the charity and provided free barista coffee for the Christmas meal provided for people in need. It has also given North East Homeless and a free exhibition stand at North East Expo Chamber Showcase, one of the region’s largest business to business events. This takes place on 2 May at Newcastle Falcons with over 1,500 visitors expected.

Clare McCabe, Chamber relationship manager said: “We are really delighted the Chamber has been able to link these two organisations together. The Gala Dinner and the stand at the Chamber Showcase at the Expo are great opportunities to really raise awareness of the charity and help it to generate funding at the same time.”

The Gala Dinner will be held on 29 March at the Sage Gateshead with comedy stars Simon Donald from Viz and Gavin Webster joining Dave Johns on stage. At the black tie event, there will be a four course meal and a silent auction. Tickets are £80 each.

Marc Gordon, Fresh Start Events said: “When I saw what North East Homeless were doing it made perfect sense to us to get on board and make a real difference to local people that need our support.”

Emma Burridge, a trustee for North East Homeless said: “We have had tremendous support from the Chamber and many of its members but Fresh Start Events in particular, have been brilliant. The HR and business advice from the Chamber has been a huge help to us as well as the networking opportunities.”

The charity has seen a huge increase in the need for its services so it is currently providing three hot meals a week in Newcastle and advice and signposting for people, who are not able to access support by more traditional routes.

Emma added: “We have been established for three years and now have the ambition to create a permanent hub in North Tyneside so people can come and see us more easily. We also have a further ambition to spread our outreach work to North Tyneside, Sunderland and, in time, Durham. There is an ever-increasing need from our street friends and we want to ensure they get the support they need.”

More information on Gala Dinner tickets is available by emailing