Salvation Army

For the past decade The Salvation Army has been collecting your unwanted clothes from their clothing banks across the province and putting them to good use!

Every year society discards about 1 million tonnes of clothing into their rubbish bins and most still has at least 70% of useful wearable life left. The Salvation Army used the 70 million items collected from the clothing banks last year to help people in need and provide clothes at prices that people can afford in charity shops and markets both at home and abroad.

Salvation Army Trading Co Ltd – the trading company solely owned by The Salvation Army – is the UK’s largest and most innovative second hand clothing processor handling a massive 15% of all the second hand clothes collected. Not only does this work help the environment but it also generates income for The Salvation Army - over £12 million in the last 13 years - making a significant contribution to it’s social and community work throughout the UK.

Tara Cunningham, Environmental Liaison Officer with Newry and Mourne District Council said “ Over the past 12 months over 230tonnes of textiles have been recycled by householders in the Newry and Mourne district. This is a fantastic achievement and more than 70% greater than last year, its reassuring to know that that the textiles are being used for charity and there is so much support for the cause. There is a textile bank at the majority of our bring sites and we are always looking for ways to expand our facilities. “

Demand for recycling continues to grow and The Salvation Army has invested heavily in up grading their clothing banks and providing an improved collection infrastructure by working with several Northern Ireland companies. Last year they saw a massive 75% increase in the amount of clothing donated through their banks in Northern Ireland - but there is still a long way to go!

They believe that it is possible to at least double this quantity in the next 18 months by using both public and private sites.

Desi Reid, The Salvation Army’s local agent – explained: “Our staff team takes great pride in working for The Salvation Army. We have two vans on the road collecting clothing from 175 banks on a weekly basis – more often if necessary and on each visit we carry out routine maintenance and cleaning of the banks. It’s good to know that our hard work supports a worthy cause – helping The Salvation Army to assist those who turn them in times of crisis”

In order to meet growing demand The Salvation Army is looking for new sites on which to place banks, eg supermarket car parks or shopping precincts - busy places with a high number of people passing by. If you think you can help, contact Desi Reid on 077 11782 217 and he will be happy to come and view the site and talk through the operating and maintenance procedures that form the core of his daily business.

For further information on any aspect of The Salvation Army Textile Recycle Scheme log onto www.satradingco.org, or contact Garth Ward at 01933 441086. Your unwanted clothing will make a real difference to The Salvation Army.