Arthur Williams is a perfect example and embodies the motto of Leith - Persevere.
People experiencing and at risk of homelessness battle extremely difficult circumstances every day and never more so than during this Covid-19 pandemic. Research shows that if you're rough sleeping in Scotland, your life expectancy is 47 years for a man and if you're a woman, it decreases to 43 years.
The family of Arthur Williams are therefore well aware of how much of a miracle it is, that despite living on the streets of Leith for almost 30 years, he somehow managed to defy these odds. Next month he will be 83 and he is currently living out his days with dignity and respect and being well looked after in a care home.
However, it took years of support and interventions to eventually get him to this point. It also took years of tolerance, kindness and generosity from countless local businesses and good hearted Leith locals to keep him safe and alive for all those years sleeping rough.
It is for this reason that the family of Arthur Williams, on his behalf, want to give something back to the community of Leith, to say thank you for the years of support from the everyday people and good Samaritans who showed him enormous kindness. They have arranged for the incredibly talented local artist, Shona Hardie (shonahardie.com) to honour Arthur's legacy and bring some much needed cheer through a mural which is painted fittingly on an Arthur Street wall in Leith.
Arthur and his family hope that the mural will serve as a reminder of the plight of people experiencing and at risk of homelessness and are also keen for people to have the opportunity to donate to Streetwork so that we can do more to help people facing similar circumstances to those that Arthur experienced.
You can make a donation here https://justgiving.com/campaign/StreetworkArthur