Charity shops across the region see "huge increase" in volunteers and donations post lockdown

Charity shops boom Joanna Harris
Joanne Harris said that the shop has been incredibly busy since reopening.

Charity shops have found the demand for its services has increased since lockdown restrictions were lifted.

Even before the pandemic, the shops around the UK had seen an increase in popularity, but now that has been accentuated due to the extended closures.

Joanne Harris at the Cornwall Air Ambulance Charity shop in Camborne in Cornwall said they had seen a huge increase in people wanting to volunteer in the store and donate items.

"It's been excellent. We have not been able to open our shops to full capacity, but if you look at how we are trading in comparison to 2019, we are actually doing very well," she said.

Charity shops say they have experienced a 'boom' since reopening.

Restrictions being placed on the sector hurt charities more than most. A huge amount of money is spent every year in charity shops, and without being able to trade, a lot struggled financially.

However, that seems to be in the past as the shops continue to go from strength to strength since reopening.

Robin Osterley, of the Charity Retail Association, said that it was great news shops were thriving post lockdown. He also highlighted the role they play in the community.

Robin Osterley says charity shops are providing a vital service on the high streets in the region.

"They act as a shop window for the charity and its activities," he said.

"They are acting as community hubs. That presence on the high street that really nothing else provides makes it all the more important for these charities to keep shops open."

Figures from the last couple of months highlight just how important the shops have been to charities' income , with MIND saying they recorded their best ever period since reopening in April.

Mind's 160 shops raised £1.5 million and the British Heart Foundation also raised over £1 million in the first month that followed stores reopening on April 12.

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