HOMELESSNESS charity Emmaus South Wales is set to reopen its doors after a 16-week closure due to the COVID-19 shutdown.
The charity, which helps people out of homelessness, is preparing for a phased reopening, with its Bridgend Superstore and high street shop on Caroline Street the first to welcome customers back today.
With a smaller than usual staff team, the charity hopes to open its Maesteg and Porthcawl shops later this month.
Around 90 per cent of the charity’s income comes from the sale of donated pre-loved items and house clearances. For every week closed during the lockdown, Emmaus South Wales faces a significant income shortfall that is used to provide accommodation, food, and support to help people rebuild their lives after being homeless.
As well as providing vital funds for the charity, the Emmaus South Wales shops provide work experience, training, and a sense of purpose for the people it supports and is key in helping them regain their confidence and self-esteem.
Marc Roberts, Head of Retail at Emmaus South Wales, said:
“We are delighted to be reopening our shops and welcoming back our supporters. Our shops are a fantastic resource for anyone in need of quality, affordable items, anyone wanting to embark on an upcycling project or looking for quirky, vintage, and retro items, or for people who want to shop responsibly, buy second-hand, and look after our environment.
“We have followed advice from the Welsh Government and Charity Retail Association to implement measures to keep everyone safe. These include limiting the number of customers at any one time, installing markings and signs throughout our shops and hand sanitiser stations at all entrance doors.”
The Emmaus South Wales shops stock a wide range of good quality second hand and vintage items, including furniture, homeware, electricals, white goods, books, clothing, and accessories.
Due to the 16-week closure, Emmaus South Wales has a full warehouse of unsold stock and will be limiting donations in store. The charity asks that people only donate good quality items on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays at its Bridgend Superstore. Items that are damaged or in a condition that cannot be sold costs the charity money to dispose of and will be turned away.
The Emmaus shops in Bridgend will be open Monday – Saturday from 10am – 4pm. To find out more about what items the charity accepts as donations, please visit: www.emmaus.org.uk/south-wales or check its Facebook page for regular updates.