St Giles Hospice has opened the doors to its Walsall and Aldridge shops once more this week following the re-opening of a number of other stores across the region.
The Walsall shop opened on Tuesday 4th August and the shop in Aldridge opened on Wednesday 5th August.
The move follows the re-opening of 19 St Giles Hospice shops and bookshops in June and July with Covid-19 safety measures in place, which has been warmly received by customers.
Lynwen Truesdale, Head of Retail at St Giles, said the hospice was delighted that its loyal customers felt confident in being able to return to the charity’s shops following the easing of Coronavirus restrictions.
She said: “Our customers are telling us that they really appreciate the measures we have taken and we would like to say a huge thank you to everyone who has shopped in our stores or donated goods to us since the lockdown has eased.
“Our shops play a vital role in helping to fund the services we offer to local people and their families living with a terminal illness and our staff and volunteers have worked hard to ensure that all of our shops create a safe shopping environment with screens at our counters, and clear distancing signage in all stores.”
In a survey of customers, a visitor to the Tamworth shop looking for furniture said: “The shop was very clean and pleasant to shop in, especially in this time of Covid-19. All of the sofas on display were covered to keep them clean and you felt safe to enter the shop. I would definitely shop there again and suggest the shop to family and friends.”
Another customer praised the Covid-19 safety measures and the friendly manager and staff, saying: “Shopping in this super-clean shop is a pleasure from the moment I walk through the door to when I leave with a high-quality bargain. I always look forward to my trips to St Giles.”
Further shops will re-open only when they can operate safely following the Government’s latest Covid-19 guidelines. Updates on opening will be posted on social media and are available along with details of the safety measures St Giles has introduced at www.stgileshospice.com/shops
Only a limited number of customers are allowed into shops at any one time and shoppers will be encouraged to pay by card where possible. They are also asked to follow the Government mandatory requirement to wear a face covering. Intensive cleaning programmes are in place and there are hand sanitiser stations for customers at shop entrances.
All donated items are stored for 72 hours before being processed, and although changing rooms will not be open there is a full refund policy on any items that needs to be brought back, with returned items being quarantined for a further 72 hours.
St Giles relies heavily upon volunteers to help run its shops, and if you would like to help you can contact your local shop or email email@example.com
As only around a third of its funding comes from Government, St Giles Hospice relies upon donations and fundraising to raise the £850,000 it needs each month to fund its care services. In April, the hospice launched ‘Katie’s Appeal’, the charity’s urgent response to the coronavirus crisis.