By Tristan Harris Tuesday 11 September 2012 Updated: 13/09 11:01
TOWN MP Sajid Javid officially launched a campaign by NewStarts in Bromsgrove to raise £25,000 for a new van so it can continue its good work helping the needy.
The charity collects donations of unwanted furniture and then distributes the items to those who need them, such as people on low incomes or people who have just been set up in a new home after being homeless.
As well as preventing them from going to landfill, they benefit the recipients and, at the Sherwood Road base, some of the items are sold on to be put towards the charity's overheads.
Because of the collection and distribution of furniture and other items, transport is a key element of NewStarts' work so reliable vans are essential.
The new long wheel base Ford Transit 350 high roof van will be specially fitted out to suit the charity's needs and enable the organisation to meet its ever-increasing demand, by making more collections and deliveries.
As well as collecting and dropping off the items, the organisation also educates people, referred by the JobCentre, on restoring furniture.
And it enables some, if they want to, to come down to the centre and show off their artistic side by putting their own design on a piece that is there.
During his visit, Mr Javid was shown around the organisation's premises at 1 Sherwood Road, which comprises storage for furniture, offices and a workshop where older pieces can be given a new lease of life.
Mr Javid said he was impressed with what he had seen at NewStarts.
"It's a privilege to be involved with this project and I appeal to local people, businesses or organisations which are in a position to help to come forward and assist with this scheme.
"It is a superb project in helping not just vulnerable people, but also those who are on low incomes, which is equally as important, and people who want to come here and learn new skills.
"I am going to stay in close touch with this as it helps my constituents - it is a much-needed charity that touches so many lives."
NewStarts' chair Nicola Martin said it was important for the charity to find the right balance between how much furniture went to the needy and how much was sold to go towards the charity's overheads.
"It's a win-win situation - the person donating the furniture gets to declutter and the person receiving it is someone who needs it."
As well as individual pick-ups of unwanted items, the charity also does house clearances.
On raising the £25,000 for the van, the charity will be applying for some grant-funding, but is hopeful of gaining a large percentage through donations or from companies wanting to sponsor the new van.
For more on the charity, donating to the van campaign or donating furniture, visit www.newstarts.org.uk, e-mail email@example.com, or call 01527 882410.
Alternatively, visit the showrooms and office at 1 Sherwood Road, Bromsgrove. B60 3DR
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