Donations warning

October 27 2020

A LOCAL councillor is keen to remind residents of the need to make donations to charity shops in Kingswood only during opening times.

Andrea Reid  is working with managers of several shops to help raise awareness of the issues that arise when gifts, however well intentioned, are left outside the shops.

Councillor Reid first raised concerns after shops were inundated when they reopened following several months of lockdown.

Now she has met managers again and has been told some volunteers have been abused by donors.

Councillor Reid wants residents to think about the storage restrictions at the shops.

She said: “Yet again I find myself having to stick up for charity store retailers. Some of the volunteers have been on the receiving end of verbal abuse, and one volunteer even had the bag of donations thrown at her and was sworn at. 

“Whilst the stores are reopening, people who wish to donate should only do so during opening hours and would likely be best phoning the store first to save a wasted trip. Charity shops have to quarantine any donations for 72 hours before handling and displaying them. This has an obvious impact on their ability to rotate stock. 

“The combined issues of storage capacity and Covid guidance will in the end dictate their [the shops’] ability to accept donations. 

“It might be annoying to those of us who decided clearing out our homes would be a good way to ease the boredom of lockdown, but the stores are not designed to take five months worth of donations at once. Please be kind and patient.”

As an alternative, if you're knee deep in black bags and the charity shops are full, Councillor Reid is keen to make residents aware that the website Thrift.plus will take your unwanted items, donate to the charity of your choice,  and will also give you a share of any profits. To find out more, visit: https://thrift.plus/