South Shropshire furniture charity is inundated with families needing help as double-dip recession is confirmed (From Ludlow Advertiser)
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South Shropshire furniture charity is inundated with families needing help as double-dip recession is confirmed
8:00am Thursday 26th April 2012 in Ludlow
A CHARITY in south Shropshire is experiencing unprecedented demand for its services as the number of people in economic dire straits increases.
The South Shropshire Furniture Scheme says the number of people it is helping with basic furnishings and household goods has more than doubled since the start of the economic downturn.
And there appears to be no sign the situation is easing.
The charity, employs nine people, and a number of volunteers.
Its fleet of four vans is working flat- out each week As well as furniture it provides essential white goods such as cookers, washing machines, fridges and fridge freezers.
It is currently helping more than 400 people a year who find themselves in financial hardship.
“People who lose their jobs or suffer a major cut in their income are finding their savings are running out,” said Jean Jarvis, chief executive of the Furniture Scheme.
“They can come to us for good quality furniture instead of taking out a high interest loan to pay for essentials.”
The charity also helps those trying to rebuild in the wake of domestic violence.
“In a typical year we will help about 20 families that are trying to make a new start after being driven away from home as a result of domestic violence,”
In order to finance its social support objectives, the charity sells high quality second-hand furniture to domestic customers and businesses from its Re-use warehouse in Weeping Cross Lane.
People in difficult circumstances can either be provided with furniture chosen by staff at the charity for £40 or they can choose themselves and take advantage of a 25 per cent discount if they are on benefit.
“We know things are getting worse because more people are opting for the £40 scheme rather than selecting their own,” Jean Jarvis said.