By Joe Locker, Local Democracy Reporter
A third contactless payment point has been installed at a McDonald’s restaurant in Nottingham as part of an initiative to help raise money for people experiencing homelessness.
Several thousand pounds have been raised in the three months since the project led by Nottingham Street Aid launched back in February.
Contactless payment points were set up across the city as part of the plan, as a way to give people a more reliable and simple way of donating directly to people in need of support.
The first contactless payment points were set up in the Victoria Centre and at the Theatre Royal on April 6.
In the week beginning May 22, the McDonald’s franchise in Nottingham agreed to install a payment point at its Clumber Street store.
Dr Paul Scotting, the coordinator of the initiative, told the Local Democracy Reporting Service: “We have got three so far.
“In addition to them we are in discussions to get one up in Sherwood, and I am moving on to my next candidate in West Bridgford.
“We are targeting the suburbs and we hope to have another three or four.
“The Victoria Centre point in particular is great, it is making plenty of money. We hope it will make a few thousand a year.
“Even though we launched in February it is very much a growth thing, with me speaking with businesses. These machines are beginning to bring money in.
“We have several thousand to spend already. It is definitely picking up.”
Inspiration for the initiative came from Cambridge Street Aid, Dr Scotting says, and a similar initiative has also been running in Leicester for the last few years since 2019.
The money donated goes into a fund managed by the Notts Community Foundation, which is then made available for charities across Nottingham, which can submit bids to the fund.
It is being supported by Nottingham City Council and the business community, including the Nottingham BID and The Nottingham Building Society, while a further 15 charities are in support.
All involved organisations are covering the overhead costs, meaning “every single penny” goes to those in need.
To donate people can approach any machine, tap their card, and a £3 donation will be made.
Nigel Wheatley, centre director at Victoria Centre, added: “Despite only being installed at the start of April this year, we’re pleased to hear that the contactless donation point in the centre, in aid of Nottingham Street Aid, is already proving to be a success.
“Many of our shoppers are eager to do what they can to help tackle homelessness within the city, and so having an easy-to-access donation point like the one situated on South Square, enables our community to help make a difference.”