Although a Mayor will have many important civic and community functions to fulfil, he or she will often spend some of his or her time raising awareness and money for charities. During his time as Mayor, Anthony has chosen to support three Corby-based charities: Corby Foodbank, Corby Street Pastors and the Lighthouse Drop-In Centre.
When Corby people are struggling financially, they can be referred to the Corby Foodbank by certain agencies such as the Jobcentre Plus or Corby Borough Council One-Stop Shop. They are then able to go to a Foodbank distribution point (of which there are several throughout the town) to collect a parcel containing three days worth of food. (Without a referral, people are not allowed to collect food.) Users of the Foodbank are only allowed to collect parcels three times, as this is a service for people in extreme hardship to get them through a short-term emergency while they get back on their feet financially.
The Corby Foodbank was set up in conjunction with the Trussell Trust, and is run entirely by volunteers, apart from the manager, who is paid part-time to coordinate supplies and volunteers. Residents and businesses have been extremely generous in providing food for the Foodbank, so Anthony hopes to provide financial assistance to help with the other needs of the charity.
Anthony with Louise Taylor, Corby Foodbank manager, and Fiona Ogunro, Corby Street Pastors coordinator
Corby Street Pastors
There can be problems associated with the "night time economy", such as customers of pubs and nightclubs being involved in antisocial behaviour, or by them making themselves vulnerable. Street pastors, all volunteers apart from the coordinator who is paid to work part-time, provide assistance such as calming aggressive people down to prevent fights happening, providing flip flops to young ladies who are walking home after removing their uncomfortable shoes, or by arranging taxis home for those who have had too much alcohol to be able to look after themselves. Both Northamptonshire Police and the Corby Community Safety Partnership have praised the Street Pastors for the noticeable decrease in the levels of crime and anti-social behaviour since they began their service.
Corby Street Pastors is a part of the Ascension Trust, a national body which supports Street Pastors groups throughout the UK.
Lighthouse Drop-In Centre
A registered charity run entirely by volunteers, the Lighthouse Drop-In Centre is open from 10am to 2pm every weekday (apart from bank holidays or when the venue is used as a polling station). It operates in the United Reformed Church in central Corby as a place for people to come along to for food, socialising and playing sports such as table tennis or pool. Although it is open to anyone, the Centre has become particularly attractive to those battling drug or alcohol addictions, as well as ex-prisoners, since it is a place where people can escape their usual bad influences and spend time with people who are trying to turn their lives around and integrate into mainstream society. Although the food is provided at a very low price, profits do help to subsidise the food for homeless people who use the Centre, as they get free food. On average, 12 homeless people are fed at the Lighthouse every day.