Our first Reach shop opened in 2012 on Shady Grove Road as a community based recycling enterprise offering low cost clothing, furniture, toys and bric-a-brac to the local community… but there was much more to it than that!
This shop quickly became one of the important ‘access points’ we provide to the community through which an initial engagement can take place with residents, where issues can be identified and signposting made. Equally significant to many is the opportunity to meet and converse on the issues of the day without the need to purchase anything, there’s always someone to offer a listening ear.
Within the local community, the shop also provided a place in which local people could volunteer their time and services if they had or were willing to acquire customer service skills, display skills or who preferred the often unseen work of sorting and ironing clothes which had been donated. In volunteering they discovered that their self-esteem was raised and they were able to contribute something back to their own community.
Such was our confidence in the concept of the Reach Shop that in November 2015, we opened our second Reach Shop, this time in the centre of the city, on Cecil Street. It will be interesting over the next year or so to reflect on its impact on this community. Again though, we will need volunteers to assist us in this project, it is simply impossible, given the pricing structure, for shop raised income to cover additional paid staff salaries.
In order for these shops to be a success, we do need donated goods and so we do appreciate the vital role donors of goods play through the donation of their unwanted gifts, clothes, furniture and books etc. These items are essential and provide the life blood for the Shop.
Our volunteers, our donors and our customers are all valued for they all help us to make the impossible possible in funding our community programmes.
The Reach Shops are open Monday to Friday, 9.30am - 4.30pm