Shipley corps opens new uniform hub to meet growing need

published on 24 Feb 2023

Shipley uniform hub

A hub providing affordable school uniforms has been opened by Shipley Salvation Army to help support families struggling with the cost of living.

The School Uniform Support Hub in Westgate, Shipley, will be open to all twice a week during term time providing items for around 40 local schools as well as shoes, coats, PE kits, brand new underwear, socks and other essentials such as stationary.

Shipley Salvation Army has been running a uniform exchange from its church building in Rhodes Place for more than four years, however it now has its own shop premises to meet growing need.

Dawn Coleman, who runs the hub, said: “The School Uniform Hub has been a big part of the support we have offered over the last four years from our church and community centre. Recognising the extent of the need and wanting this service to be more accessible to all families is why we have decided to open a stand-alone shop. Families do not need to be referred to us, they can just pop in.  

Having decent school uniform provides dignity for the child so they can go to school with confidence and feel ready to learn
Dawn Coleman

“Having decent school uniform provides dignity for the child so they can go to school with confidence and feel ready to learn.”

Last year Shipley Salvation Army supported around 150 families with uniforms.

Captain Laura McLean, who leads Shipley Salvation Army, said: “The cost of living is impacting everybody and for many families a brand new school uniform is simply something they cannot afford when they are already struggling with the rising cost of energy bills and food. We want to be able to ease that burden for them.

“Not only does it help families who are on tight budgets, but it means that uniform is being recycled and not going into landfill so it’s better for the environment.

Wayne Price, Dawn Coleman and Captain Laura McClean
Major Wayne Price, Dawn Coleman and corps officer Captain Laura McLean

“We’d like to say a big thank you to all who have donated uniforms to us and continue to support us. Without those donations we would not be able to meet the need. Also, a big thank you to our staff members and volunteers who worked really hard to get the space ready.”

The hub will serve Shipley, Baildon, Bingley, Thackley, Idle, Wrose, Windhill, Thorpedge and Ravenscliffe.

It officially opened on Wednesday 22 February and will be open every Wednesday between 1.30pm and 4.30pm and on Fridays between 9.30am and 2.30pm. School holiday opening days will be announced at a later date.

The service is a drop-in with no referral and no criteria necessary, however confidential referrals can still be carried out via schools and family services.

For more information search for Shipley Area School Uniform Support on Facebook and find out more about Shipley Salvation Army here 

A Salvation Army Officer sitting and speaking with an older gentleman with a long silver beard.

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