Charity begins at home

I am writing this because I have been considering the concept of the charity shop model. I want to explore this a bit in today’s post.

Charity shops have been a well established feature of the UK for many years. And support many charities, in bringing in finances from cheap items. However, as time has ticked by and many stores are offering increasingly cheap products, charity shops are often more expensive than the actual shops selling new products. I looked in the window of one charity shop and the items were, in my mind far too overpriced.

The problem is, many people I work with cannot afford food, let alone clothes, or even underwear or socks. Universal Credit is very hard to manage on. Numerous people are using foodbanks, simply to survive. And charity shops are beyond the reach of many.

So what is the answer? I would argue that the concept of charity shops needs to be rethought. I think there need to be clothing banks, or swap shops, where people can exchange goods without money changing hands. Many people are losing their jobs and are in severe financial difficulty. And charity can begin at home; by giving away what we don’t need, to others who do need it.

There is a lovely food clothes helpline in the UK, where people ask for help and others offer it. It is basically a kindness exchange. I think in these times, this is essential. We need to help one another.

Today’s recipe of hope is to think about how to support our planet. David Attenborough encourages us not to waste anything, so let’s aim for that. I try not to throw much away if I can help it, because I want the planet to survive. Let’s all play our part X

Published by hope2020exchangingdisappointmentforhope

I am a qualified social worker and run a community project for vulnerable adults. I am passionate about social justice. I feel that every life matters. No-one is insignificant or invaluable. I also believe that everyone has the power to change, although some may not wish to. Essentially, I believe in hope. Hope Wells is my writing name.

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