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Dundee charity founder takes on 53-mile run to fund crisis services for desperate families

Eagles Wings charity founder Mike Cordiner is preparing for an ultra-marathon, training with service user David Smith.
Eagles Wings charity founder Mike Cordiner is preparing for an ultra-marathon, training with service user David Smith.

The founder of a Dundee charity says the number of families in financial crisis is soaring – even those in full-time employment.

Mike Cordiner, founder of Christian charity the Eagles Wings Trust says he is seeing a surge in demand for support managing finances, addiction and homelessness.

Before the pandemic, around 16 people visited the Douglas Street charity per day. This is now 40 and climbing as the cost of living crisis bites.

Mike Cordiner says demand for help is growing.

As well as financial struggles, Mike says the pandemic has caused more people in need of help battling mental health and addition issues.

In particular, he is seeing more people in full-time work struggling to make ends meet.

As well as providing support and advice from the charity’s premises, volunteers also run a soup kitchen twice a week.

Mike said: “There is no doubt that as things get back to normal after Covid-19 that more and more people are turning to us for help.

“Numbers are well up on before.

“Sadly there are people among those who are working for a living but still can’t afford to make ends meet.

“Increasing costs are affecting everyone and people are struggling to cope.”

Mike says people from all walks of life are turning to the charity for support.

He added: “We have folk from all walks of life and all ages turn to us.

“Mental health issues are growing, poverty of all kinds is a big problem in Dundee  – from food and fuel poverty to childhood poverty.

“We can’t provide support for everyone but those we can’t help we can signpost to a place that can help them.”

Self-funded

As Eagles Wings is self-funded, the rise in demand has meant more money than ever is needed to keep the charity afloat.

Mike has decided to take part in a 53-mile ultra marathon this weekend in a bid to raise money.

Mike Cordiner (right) training with Eagles Wings service user David Smith.

He will take part in the 53-mile Highland Fling on Saturday, running for close to 12 hours on a course over the West Highland Way.

Mike said: “This is going to be tough and a bit of a struggle for me but it’s nothing compared to the struggles some of the people who come to us for help are going through.

“I can actually take inspiration from many of the people we see on a daily basis.

“The men and women who come to Eagles Wings face constant struggles with homelessness, abuse, mental health problems and addiction of various sorts.”

Donation to Mike’s marathon effort can be made at justgiving.com/fundraising/mike-cordiner5

Service user David says Eagles Wings  Trust helped after a fall

David Smith, 38, turned to Eagles Wings Trust when he was left blind in one eye after a fall when he hit his head.

David Smith.

He said: “I come here regularly and everyone has really helped me.

“I have had help with learning how to cook and I have also got involved in Street Soccer through Mike and the team.

“I fully support what Mike is doing and I think it’s amazing that he is doing this run to try to raise money for the charity.”

‘It’s not easy’: How members of Dundee’s homeless community have coped with Covid

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