TWO students have begun a six month placement at a second-hand furniture project designed to help a homeless shelter.
The placements are part of an ongoing project by the Worcestershire Ambassadors, a group of business leaders, to support St Paul's Hostel through the Second Chance Furnishings project.
University of Worcester students John Winter and Dina Patai will be working on marketing and book-keeping as part of the Second Chance Furnishings team.
The project was set up with the help of a £40,000 donation from the Worcestershire Ambassadors in 2012 and helps low income Worcestershire families by giving them furniture donated by the community.
It also helps re-settle clients from St Paul’s Hostel into their own homes and sells affordable second hand furniture to the public.
Since its launch, the project has already outgrown its initial 2,500 square foot warehouse and is now storing furniture in another site in Martley.
Worcestershire Ambassador board member Philip Fowler said: “The Worcestershire Ambassadors sponsored the student of the year at the University of Worcester recently and this link gave us the idea that some students could be integrated with Second Chance Furnishings to mutual benefit.”
“The students get the benefit of real, practical business experience, whilst the charity gets the use of their skills and enthusiasm for six months.”
He added: “Second Chance Furnishings is really close to the hearts of the Ambassadors, and giving practical support and time is important to us.
"I know that several of our 190 members regularly donate furniture, for example the Bank House Hotel has made donations of furniture and through one of our Ambassadors, the Belfry donated hundreds of beds.
"The students we have put in place at Second Chance Furnishings will be helping spread the word that the charity not only needs donations, but is a great place to buy furniture or volunteer.”
Mr Fowler is a director of Second Chance Furnishings and volunteers with the project one day every week on their marketing and driving donations, while Ambassadors’ vice chair Vince Hopkins helped put together the project’s business plan.
Anyone who wants to donate or buy furniture or could volunteer for the project should call 01905 360785 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
More information about the Ambassadors is available at worcestershireambassadors.com