Jermaine Francis, Staff Reporter
With just a few days to go before Christmas, the Clarendon Association for Street People (CLASP) is seeking the public's assistance to continue its charity work.
Ray Wilson, CLASP board member in charge of operations, said the charity's work has expanded beyond just taking care of the mentally challenged to now catering for several of Clarendon's most destitute.
"We have several indigents that we are caring for, too, who are not mentally ill. Since this week, several persons have come in (for assistance) from as far as Thompson Town (located in northern Clarendon) to get food supplies," Wilson said.
He said the number of persons who simply show up at the CLASP office in Denbigh, Clarendon, for food and clothing on a daily basis has grown beyond the resources they have.
In addition, he added that they currently provide food and counselling to approximately 20 mentally ill persons, whom they visit almost daily and, from time to time, they might offer assistance to those living on the streets.
However, despite the constraints, Wilson said they "try as best as possible to offer whatever assistance [they] can".
He stated that their main source of support is Food For The Poor, but based on the number of persons seeking assistance these days, they need all the support they can get.
"We definitely do not refuse any assistance, whether cash or kind, because we desperately need it to help those in need," Wilson added.
He said especially now, in the Christmas season, they would appreciate all the help they can get.
"During this time of year, we always seek to help as many persons as possible and we go out and assist all those who we can, and there are also plans for a Christmas dinner," Wilson said.
Person who wish to contribute to the work of CLASP may contact the organisation at 986-6902 or make a donation to their Jamaica National Building Society account: 10221709.