Words by Smiley Team
The future of shopping for the planet is getting a little easier.
The Charity Shop Gift Card – first launched back in September 2021 – has got some pretty major charities on board, expanding its scheme throughout the UK.
YMCA’s 104 charity shops across England and Wales are now part of a revolutionary gift card scheme designed to fight back against fast fashion while making the pennies and pounds go further.
In connection with the Charity Retail Association, the gift cards can be used in any charity signed up to the scheme, and aim to promote three key pillars of ‘re-wear’ – update your wardrobe without breaking the bank; ‘share’ – community spirit and charitable causes; and ‘care’ – sustainable shopping to reduce environmental impact.
The Charity Shop Gift Card has also been designed as a social enterprise, with a minimum of 65% of profits going towards funding free gift cards for people in need, including some local YMCAs who will now gift them to new residents to help them settle into their new surroundings.
Denise Hatton, Chief Executive of YMCA England & Wales, said: “We are thrilled to be part of this new initiative and firmly support the ‘re-wear, share and care’ ethos which inspired it. As the cost of living crisis continues, affordable and sustainable shopping is becoming more and more popular, and so to have a gift card that champions this while also giving back to the community is a real bonus.
“YMCA has more than 100 shops spread out locally across England and Wales, many of which feed directly into their local YMCA services and the young people supported by them. We’re very excited to have found a new way to engage with and support our commUnities, and can’t wait to see people spending their gift cards in store!”
Charity Shop Gift Cards will not only be sold directly from charity shops but also in the gift card section of many leading retailers such as Sainsbury’s and WHSmith, meaning that anyone can buy a card to use themselves or as a gift.
Money raised at YMCA charity shops across England and Wales plays a vital part in helping young people across almost 700 local communities, from providing a warm bed for homeless young people to delivering mental health advice and counselling for those in need. Every purchase, donation or hour volunteered makes a huge difference.
FIND OUT MORE: Learn more about the cards and the inspiration behind the scheme at thecharityshopgiftcard.co.uk.