A South Croydon six-year-old’s charity appeal has raised 100 times more than her original target – and helped to prepare meals for Croydon’s homeless as well as making a starring appearance on television.
Inside Croydon reported last month how Naomi Townsend was taking part in Regina Coeli’s Parents and Teachers’ Association’s fundraiser, which set each pupil in the school a target of raising £22 by February 22, 2022 – or £22.22 by 22/2/22.
Naomi called her mission “Project 22” and dismissed regular fund-raising efforts, like sponsored swims or walks, as “Boring!”
She said, “No one should have to sleep on the street, it’s cold and lonely out there, and I want everyone to be warm and happy just like my little sister and I are with our family.”
Naomi’s GoFund me page has now topped £2,250, while she has used her own pocket money – what her dad, Lee Townsend, calls her “mortgage money” – to pay for the ingredients to cook pasta meals and cup cakes for 22 people sleeping rough in Croydon town centre.
Working alongside locally based charity Percy’s Homeless Hub, Naomi and Lee Townsend delivered on their promised meals last week, all in front of the ITV London cameras.
“The evening was a great success,” said charity worker and father, Lee Townsend.
“Naomi’s pasta and cupcakes were a big success.
“We have some real gems in Croydon, and Jack Percival and Adam Melius are two legends who continue to demonstrate their selflessness through Percy’s Homeless Hub.”
Percival and Melius were also providing burgers, drinks, sleeping bags, lay down mats and hygiene packs from their new van – the first time that they have been able to operate from the vehicle.
The admiration was mutual, of course. “Lee Townsend and his family are amazing,” they said.
The ITV London news report was broadcast on Monday evening, February 28.
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