A HAMPSHIRE organisation dedicated to helping homeless people has been forced to give up its work.

In 2013 Lyn Matthews, 58, and Peter Marsh, 52, set out on a cold winter’s night to give out teas and coffees to those sleeping rough.

Five years down the line, the pair have helped hundreds of people on the streets providing them with hot food, clean bedding and toiletries seven days a week.

In 2017 their volunteer group Help the Homeless also received an award from the High Sheriff of Hampshire in recognition of its valuable services to the community.

However, due to money troubles the couple are no longer able to keep up their work.

The organisation is not only fully funded by donations from the public and local businesses, but it is also run from their family home.

Lyn said: “I’m so devastated we are having to stop all of our good work, but it is taking over our life.

"I want to say thank you to the community and the businesses that have helped to fund us – we wouldn’t have been able to do it without them.”

Joanne Cranwell, who volunteers for the organisation, said: “I really will miss doing this everyday. Not only have I helped other people but this has also really helped my confidence.

“It’s brilliant to know you are making a positive impact to someone else’s life.”

The couple say they have helped more than 10 people in the past five years get back to work and get a roof over their head.

Kevin Davis, 59, from Portswood is just one of many people who Lyn and Peter have helped.

Kevin said: “Lyn and Peter saved my life. They are the reason why I’m now off the streets.”

The couple have gone to every length to help those sleeping rough.

On Christmas day they provided a Christmas dinner and a shoe box filled with clothes and toiletries, but now the couple need £3,000 to get out of debt and carry on with their charity work.

An emotional Lyn said: “Me and Peter feel like we are letting the homeless down. “I’m honestly completely gutted.

“Hopefully, if we get out of debt we will be able to start back up again soon.”

Pete said: “We would love to have a shop in the city where we could base ourselves, but unfortunately we just can’t afford it.”

“We will continue to support the homeless as best as we can but at the moment we can’t let it take over our life.”