It’s time to donate your lockdown declutter.
One of the north’s biggest charities has reopened for donations as they look ahead to recouping £1 million lost to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Highland Hospice opened the doors to their retail warehouse on Harbour Road, yesterday welcoming donations for the first time in three months.
The move comes as the charity looks ahead to reopening their shops across the north in the coming months in an effort to recoup around £250,000 lost through retail sales.
Andrew Leaver, head of fundraising and development said the reopening the warehouse has enabled the charity to look ahead to “some sense of normality”.
“We are delighted,” he said.
“With movement into phase one of the route map out of lockdown we felt we could create a safe working environment at the warehouse and start to take in people’s donations again. There has been a real interest.
“We know people have been tidying their houses and clearing out and we are looking for their stock. All the good stuff we can sell and help us recoup some of those lost sales and make money when out shops are able to reopen is most welcome.”
All donations gifted to the charity will be collected at the warehouse before being transported daily by staff to a temporary facility in the area, where items will remain in quarantine for 72 hours.
Items of clothing will also be steamed by the three members of staff on site in compliance with government guidelines.
However, the charity has warned that staff will be unable to help donors unload items from their vehicles, in compliance with social distancing and to reduce the risk of contact transmission.
With an estimated annual loss of around £1million across all sectors of the organisation, he says the generosity of the Highland community has helped keep the charity afloat.
Mr Leaver added: “We estimated that we would have a loss this year of around £750,000. We have actually had to re-estimate that as time goes on and I think we are looking at £1million loss this year.
“We are very fortunate that over 35 years the Highland community has supported us and we have reserves that will see us through this 12 month period but we do need to get back to normal and retain the resilience of our organisation through getting our trading and fundraising back to some sense of normality.”