NINETEEN vulnerable families are currently awaiting essential furniture from a not-for-profit organisation which is in desperate need of donations.

Second Chance Furnishings, based at Springs Trading Estate, Vincent Road, Worcester, urgently needs sofas as well as beds and wardrobes after seeing a surge in referrals.

It has already helped 36 people referred to them by Worcester City Council since Christmas but has a backlog of families and needs people's generosity to help them hand over much-needed furniture.

Paul Clarke, operations co-ordinator, said: "Usually, the people who have been referred to us have no furniture whatsoever.

"They are people who have fallen on hard times, were homeless or people who have escaped domestic violence and other circumstances.

"But we're pretty desperate for sofas and want to make sure we have got enough furniture to keep people going and keep filling orders to help the vulnerable people who come to us.

"It is always an ongoing challenge but we are trying to help make a house a home for people who really need it."

Set up by St Paul's Hostel, Second Chance Furnishings provides white goods and furniture for the city council's Discretionary Welfare Assistance Scheme as well as sells affordable and donated items from its warehouse.

It has managed to take on two members of staff who were ex-homeless and former St Paul's Hostel users and had been volunteering at the warehouse.

White goods are provided by electrical store Apollo but it relies on people's generosity to keep it stocked with good condition furniture.

Vans are usually able to pick up unwanted goods within 24 to 48 hours.

Mr Clarke said: "We are struggling with sofas because people offer them but unfortunately because they don't have any fire regulations we can't accept them.

"However, we are happy to speak to people if they are unsure whether their goods would be suitable.

"Stock levels have dropped dramatically because we're using back up stock and now have next to nothing."

Anyone who thinks they can help should call 01905 360785 or email