A Leeds homeless outreach worker has spoken of her distress after meeting a rough sleeper who was in agony after being kicked in the face while he slept.
Becky Joyce, who runs Leeds Homeless Street Angels, spoke to the man on Thursday evening when she and other volunteers from the group were distributing food and warm clothing in the city centre.
He was suffering from a broken jaw after being attacked while he slept and was 'starving' because he was unable to eat without pain.
Writing on the group's Facebook page, Becky said:-
"It was very sad to see one of the guys starving - but he had been kicked in his face whilst sleeping and his jaw had been broken. He was so hungry he was trying to force it down in agony - why do people think it’s OK to hurt people when they are so down on their luck? It's beyond me."
Becky and her twin sister Shelley began their outreach and support patrols in Headingley and now have teams of volunteers covering the suburb and the city centre. They hand out food, blankets and toiletries, some of it donated by local businesses.
Their eventual aim is to open a day centre called Abi House in memory of their other sister Abi, who passed away last year. It would provide mental health support, drug and alcohol counselling, and life skills workshops.
In February businessman Sir Alan Sugar praised the group's work with rough sleepers and urged his Twitter followers to donate to their cause.
In January a woman spoke of her shock after witnessing a group of men throw an unprovoked punch at a sleeping homeless man outside the Cosmopolitan Hotel on New Year's Eve.