The Community Safety Partnership, a multi-agency group made up of Darlington Borough Council, Durham Constabulary, NHS Darlington Clinical Commissioning Group, The Probation Service, Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Service, and the Voluntary and Community Sector, have issued a joint press release to discourage the public from giving to beggars. 

Begging has become a problem in the Town Centre, affecting both local businesses and members of the public. As a community it is a problem that can only be addressed together. All of those behind the press release acknowledge that there are needs behind the activity of begging, but those needs can only be met by the individuals accessing the help that is available to them, not by random acts of kindness. Through the joint statement, the hope is that the generous and compassionate people of Darlington will work in partnership with the agencies who are trying to help those who are begging, directing their compassion and generosity through the charities rather than giving directly to the person begging. This will avoid the often large sums of money involved feeding problems like addiction to drugs or alcohol.

The 700 Club is at the forefront of this work. It has a dedicated member of staff working alongside those who are begging to help them move on in their lives and to overcome the problems that underlie the need to beg.