PROVIDENCE Row, the Catholic administered centre for the homeless in East London which last year was facing the threat of closure, is to launch a special appeal for funds to put it on a secure financial footing.
The appeal comes in the 1983 annual report of the famous night refuge and home which nightly provides more than 50 beds for homeless men and women.
Last year the refuge, which makes up a large part of the centre in Crispin Street, was facing a desperate financial crisis, and the Providence Row management committee announced last July that it would be forced to close.
After an outcry by staff at the refuge and by local housing groups, a campaign was organised to try and save the shelter.
The Greater London Council and the Westminster Diocese pledged grants to Providence Row which allowed it to continue operating, but now the refuge is again appealing for funds.
In a letter sent out with the report Mrs Pam Hutchence, the co-ordinator of the refuge, says that the GLC annual grant of £70,000, together with gifts from the Sisters of Mercy and other organisations, only covers staff wages.
"Providence Row has to provide for all the other vital necessities — food, heat, light laundry, cleaning materials, replacement of linen, and the constant drain of keeping these old buildings watertight and in repair."
Mrs Hutchence says that the special appeal is not to be launched until the Autumn, but adds that because of the late publication of the annual report, caused by last year's crisis, charitable income had dropped considerably in the last few months. "We do need some help from you," she writes, "to enable us to meet our current expenses."