Local charity on a mission to make ends meet

This week saw south Leeds charity St Luke’s Cares open their fifth charity store, in the heart of Beeston Hill on the busy Dewsbury Road – as part of a major push to become financially secure, and to safeguard their much-valued work in the local community.

St Luke’s Cares fifth shop (image: Lucy Potter)

The new store is set in the sizable ‘Pavilion’ building (known by many as the former Surestart HQ) at 246-252 Dewsbury Road, facing onto the major Tunstall Road junction. They’ve a wide range of stock, including furniture, men’s and women’s clothes, accessories, bedding, gifts, and more – all of course at low prices.

St Luke’s Cares is a well-loved charity working across the south Leeds communities – especially supporting vulnerable young people through mentoring, educational programmes, youth clubs, and more. Key work includes the Hitbase community IT base at St Luke’s Church, and the Shine Project – an empowerment programme for local young women and girls. The past two years has seen them open an expanding chain of charity shops around Leeds – the aim being to become financially independent and therefore able to guarantee their work, and also in time to generate money to distribute to other local groups and projects.

Jackson Turner, Beeston resident and manager at St Luke’s Cares, says:

“It’s a tough climate for charities and for youthwork in general, yet we’re passionate about the work we’re doing in the community and don’t want to see it jeopardised by funding cuts or the like. So we’ve embarked on this challenge to raise all our funding through charity shops – and I think we’re really getting somewhere. Loads of different people have got onboard to support us, we’re learning the trade, and we’re starting to make some money. Everything we make goes back into work in the local area, so massive thanks to all those helping to make it happen.”

The stores are always looking for donations of good quality clothes and other goods to sell, can provide a free pick-up service for bulky donations and furniture, and even do whole house clearances. They’re also always looking for volunteers to help staff the stores or to help out in other ways – a great way to meet new people and learn new skills. And crucially, they’re always looking for customers! They also have stores on Beeston Road, and in Middleton, Morley and Chapel Allerton. For more info or to support them, click here; or for house clearances, call them on 07800512074.