In partnership with John Lewis, The Cyrenians is opening its first Charity Shop – with a twist - on Tuesday 9th March at 8.30am.
‘The Shop’ is based in a retail unit in Cruddas Park shopping centre in the West End of Newcastle and is a charity shop with a difference.
‘The Shop’ will sell quality donations of men’s, ladies’, children’s and babies’ clothing and shoes and accessories such as shoes, belts, bags, etc. These will be on sale at very competitive prices, within the budgets of local people.
Dawn Wright, The Cyrenians Shop Manager explains:
“The original 'D-day: donate don't dump' campaign was first launched by Mary Portas, in her recent TV series 'Mary, Queen of Charity Shops; employees were encouraged to donate one item once a year at their place of work.
“We’re appealing to all employees and employers to join our D-Day campaign. We will visit every workplace taking part to collect the donated items.
“We want to establish a reputation for high quality and value and make a positive contribution to the community.”
Income from the sale of clothing will cover operating costs with any profit from The Shop going towards the work of The Cyrenians.
Throughout 2009 John Lewis Newcastle has provided expert training and advice on how to plan and operate a retail business, equipment needs, signage, fixtures and fittings. Further training on customer service and merchandising training is to follow.
John Lewis has held its first 'D-day' appeal and stock levels will be boosted by a programme of ‘D-Days’ planned throughout 2010. Links to other companies in the region have been made to encourage them to follow suit.
Barry Blamire, Managing Director of John Lewis Newcastle said:
“We’re delighted to be supporting this exciting project with The Cyrenians. We are really pleased to be able to offer our experience and knowledge in retail to help the shop evolve. As more of our partners found out about the project they went one step further in donating clothes for the shop to sell. Therefore as a business working with the Cyrenians we have given them the best opportunity to succeed.
As well as providing good quality clothing at reasonable prices in an area of Newcastle with few shops, The Shop will provide volunteering and training opportunities for The Cyrenians service users who help with running The Shop and its associated activities.
We very much hope that it will help those involved to take a step closer to employment in retail or other sectors.”
The Shop is further supported by the Graphic Design Department at Northumbria University where second year degree students are helping to develop the designs for a campaign to raise awareness amongst companies and encourage them to take part.
Stephen Bell, Chief Executive of The Cyrenians continued:
“The Shop will become an important part of the training and skills development opportunities which we offer at The Cyrenians. Our whole purpose is to help change lives and build futures – there are so many benefits to come from this project – it’s an exciting day for all of us.”
To find out how your company can take part please contact Dawn Wright, The Cyrenians Shop Manager on 0191 273 8891.