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School uniform scheme – collection points to open at selected times in first week of August

Jackie Patton, Mid and East Antrim Borough Council's Head of Community Planning and Development, with Deputy Mayor, Cllr Matthew Armstrong, at the Waveney Road HRC to launch the 2021 School Uniform Scheme

Families who wish to avail of Mid and East Antrim Borough Council’s School Uniform Scheme, will be able to arrange collection from one of a number of locations across the borough during the first week of August.

The hugely successful initiative has been delivered in partnership with Mid and East Antrim Community Advice Services (MEACAS) and supported by Volunteer Now.

Initially piloted in the borough in July 2019, the scheme has provided a lifeline to many families, particularly during lockdown when charity shops were closed.

This year, as with previous years, our wonderful local residents have been extremely supportive of the scheme and Council wish to say a big thank you to all those who have donated over recent weeks.

Collection points will now be open to those who are in need of items of school clothing from Monday 2 to Friday 6 August.

Uniforms, which are subject to availability, have been safely sorted in line with all government restrictions, and are free of charge.

There is no qualifying criteria or referral process. Beneficiaries will be asked to complete a very short questionnaire, which will be anonymous, and will allow us to measure impact.

Deputy Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Councillor Matthew Armstrong, said:

“This is such a great initiative that has so many positive outcomes. Council is working hard to tackle poverty, particularly in the wake of multiple job losses over the last year, due to the pandemic.

“Not only does it make good financial sense, it also strengthens communities and makes good ecological sense.

“School closures have been commonplace in fighting the battle against the pandemic, so whilst many uniforms may be outgrown, they will have had little wear so should be perfectly good for to be used by another child.

“On average, each household bins more than 25kg of textiles a year. So rather than adding to the landfill mountains our residents have been able to play their part in helping us to sustain our beautiful environment.”

Details of where and when school uniforms can be collected are as follows:

Ballymena Area – Harryville Community Centre, 73 Brooke Park, Ballymena, BT42 3AU

Larne Area – Larne Market Yard, Station Road, Larne, BT40 3AA

Carrickfergus Area – Oakfield Community Centre, Oakfield Drive, Carrickfergus BT38 7SP

Please note collection can be undertaken on the following dates / times only:

• Monday 2 August (morning session 10am – 12pm, afternoon session 2-4pm, evening session 6-8pm)

• Wednesday 4 August (morning session 10am – 12pm, afternoon session 2-4pm, evening session 6-8pm)

• Friday 6 August (morning session 10am – 12pm, afternoon session 2-4pm, evening session 6-8pm)


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