Tuesday 19 August 2014

Emmaus Hampshire combines vintage past with business of future

Eastleigh shop int

Charity Emmaus Hampshire is set to re-launch its Eastleigh shop on Friday 5 September, selling a range of new clothing, electrical items and white goods, alongside retro and upcycled clothing and furniture.

The charity – which supports formerly homeless people by giving them a place to live and work – will also offer two ‘business incubation pods’ – located above the Leigh Road shop. This business space will provide support, mentoring and practical business skills to residents of Emmaus – known as companions – who seek to set up their own businesses.

The new store will be opened by Madam Deputy Mayor of Eastleigh, Councillor Jane Welsh and the Deputy Mayor’s Escort, Len Welsh, at 10am on Friday 5 September. As many members of the public as possible are encouraged to come along, to join in the celebration. Goods to be sold in store will include retro clothing and furniture, along with a brand new range of Indesit fridges, freezers and washing machines at competitive prices.

The opening party will also offer the Hampshire community an opportunity to thank a team of volunteers from Sainsbury’s, who nominated Emmaus Hampshire as their charity of the year and who worked hard to get the store ready for opening.

Tom O’Connor, business manager at Emmaus Hampshire, said: “The Eastleigh shop is one of two stores run by Emmaus Hampshire, and we’re really hoping that it will become our flagship business. We think the refurbishment - which has taken place thanks to the hard work of companions and volunteers - really offers a view of the future of charity stores, as people look for quality refurbished second-hand goods, alongside new items.”

Companion Kelly, who arrived at Emmaus Hampshire earlier this year, hopes to set up a gardening services business, once she has completed a course in horticultural studies. She said: “When you have been down on your luck and found yourself homeless, being able to tap into the business expertise of others is worth its weight in gold. The community has been hugely supportive of my ambitions.”

Paul Jones, store manager from Sainsbury’s, said: “We have been kept really busy helping to renovate the store by helping with the painting, along with sorting customer donations ready for display in the newly refurbished store. We think the work that Emmaus Hampshire does is vital and our team is proud to support them this year.”

The community is keen to see as many guests come along on the day, so to find out more, call Tom on 07917 128005.

If you can't make it, but would like to donate goods - you can do so online by clicking here.

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