LYMINGTON sculptor Michael Turner is auctioning a stainless steel guardian angel piece in support of local homeless charity Michael House.
Depicting a person sitting alone on a bench with a guardian angel standing above, the piece symbolises that that even in desolate times, people are never alone.
Michael said: “Michael House got in touch to see whether I would be able to donate a piece that they could auction to raise funds. They suggested perhaps a pair of boots but I wanted to come up with something a bit more thought-provoking than that.”
“I have created a full-sized angel statue in the past and I am always fascinated by the idea of angels watching over us so I thought this was quite fitting.”
“Christmas especially can be a very desperate time for homeless people so if my sculpture can raise some money to make things a little easier then I will be very happy.
“Because it’s a silent auction I don’t know how much it will raise – but if it can raise £500 or more I’ll be very happy.”
The winning bid is also set to be doubled as part of a week-long Big Give fundraising drive which will see sponsors match-fund any money the charity receives.
Michael House first opened as a night shelter in Boscombe in 1992 and since then the charity has grown to provide move-on opportunities to help those affected escape the cycle of homelessness.
It currently accommodates 25 people in the main hostel and a move-on house next for eight additional people.
Chief executive Mark Horsford said: “As an independent charity we do have to do a lot of fundraising – so when an artist like Michael donates something which we can auction it gives us an amazing boost.
“Although we are based in Boscombe, we often help people originally from the New Forest and Christchurch who have been rough sleeping in Bournemouth.
“We have recently managed to purchase an additional move-on flat so the money we raise will be very useful in refurbishing and furnishing it.
“We also run lots of activities like arts and crafts, cooking and even a creative writing course – because this can really give our a sense of ownership and purpose. For some people it can make all the difference.
“All of activities are run on a small budget but extra money ensures we can buy the materials and ingredients we need to run them.”
Money raised from the auction will also support a Christmas celebration event hosted by the charity’s patron, Bransgore resident and former BDO world darts champion Scott Mitchell.
Those interested in bidding on the guardian angel have until Monday 9th December to submit their bid to Michael – by sending a private message to his Facebook account or emailing him at email@example.com or by calling 07976 713826.
For more information or to donate to Michael House visit www.michaelhouse.co.uk.