Esh Border Construction helps build a future for Edinburgh’s homeless

Ashleigh Day, assistant estimator at Esh Border Construction with Fresh Start operations manager Stewart Ferguson
Ashleigh Day, assistant estimator at Esh Border Construction, with Fresh Start operations manager, Stewart Ferguson

Esh Border Construction is helping deliver a fresh start for people in need in Edinburgh after handing a homeless organisation a vital bursary boost.

Fresh Start – which provides a range of starter packs and support to people starting out in a new home or who at risk of homelessness – is the recipient of a grant from the construction firm’s Esh Communities initiative.

Ashleigh Day, assistant estimator at Esh Border Construction, was given a tour of the charity’s base in the Pilton area of the capital by operations manager Stewart Ferguson.

Every year the volunteer-run organisation reaches thousands of new tenants and vulnerable people through its starter packs initiative and services including cooking, gardening and employment classes.

The Esh Communities cash injection will go towards creating new starter packs.

The packs offer people with little or no possessions a helping hand when moving into a new home. They offer basic essential household items including: cleaning products, crockery and cutlery, kitchen utensils, bedding, small electrical appliances, toiletries and towels.

Ashleigh and Stewart with volunteers Eleanor Kemp (nearest front) Anne Neal (middle) and Ruth Wimberley (back)
Ashleigh and Stewart with volunteers Eleanor Kemp (nearest front) Anne Neal (middle) and Ruth Wimberley (back)

Stewart said: “We help people make a home for themselves. We give them something to sleep on, something to sit on and something to eat from. These things sound quite basic but if you are just starting out, they are essentials for everyday life. To get that start is a fantastic help and really can make the difference for people.

“We rely entirely on donations and volunteers – everyone supports each other – but the support of external organisations like Esh Border Construction is vital if we are to grow and continue helping people in the area.”

Esh Communities has been operating for five years and provided more than £140,000 to organisations across the UK that serve the same communities as the company.

Ashleigh said: “When we heard about the work Fresh Start were doing we knew they were an ideal fit for the Esh Communities ethos, and it has been great to see first-hand the amount of time, effort and care that is put in by this wonderful community enterprise.

“Fresh Start is not only an incredibly positive organisation, it is also enabling people to make tangible changes in their own lives, and we’re so proud to be part of that.”

Esh Communities is supported by Esh Charitable Trust and is open to groups who operate across Esh Group’s regions with innovative approaches to tackling community issues.

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