With Christmas approaching, Cllr Nick Peel is urging anyone visiting Bolton for the Put Big Light On festival, or for seasonal shopping, to give via a Hope for Change collection box.
The majority of people who beg in the street are not homeless but are instead likely to be facing multiple complex issues such as addiction or poor mental health.
Designed as a “better way to give”, Hope for Change ensures all donations go directly to the Bolton charities and organisations that work with people facing these issues.
Cllr Peel first worked with local partners to introduce the Hope for Change initiative while in his previous role as Cabinet Member for Regulatory Services.
He said: “We know that town centre begging is a concern for our residents and for local businesses, which is why we first introduced Hope for Change.
“Bolton people are among the most generous in the country and, especially at Christmas time, it is only natural that people want to give to those in need.
“Hope for Change is the best way to do this, it ensures your money goes to Bolton charities who can help tackle the complex problems that lead to people begging in the first place.”
Branded Hope 4 Change collection boxes can be found in shops and businesses across the town centre.
Donations are distributed through Bolton Community and Voluntary Services.
Visit boltonhopeforchange.org.uk for more information.