Sunday, June 16, 2024


A HYGIENE bank is in desperate need of donations as demand rises.

Established in December 2021, the much-needed donations are distributed free of charge via Newcastle’s Pantry Foodbank.

And now, in the midst of the ongoing cost-of-living crisis, locals are being encouraged to donate whatever they can.

It doesn’t have to be costly.

A simple bottle of shampoo, a toothbrush or shower gel costing as little as 99p will be just as well received as something several times that price!

Boxes, where items can be dropped off, are located at the SERC campus along Newcastle’s Castlewellan Road, while also in the town they are at a number of chemists, namely Thorntons Medicare, McKeevers, Gordons and Harts.

Donations can also be left off at Groves Chemist in Dundrum, and at the McKeevers pharmacy in Castlewellan.

In the two years since the initiative was launched, its supporters, and recipients, have appreciated the generosity of donors.

However, as the cost-of-living crisis continues to impact local communities, and in the lead-up to Christmas, there have been fewer contributions.

Julie Teggart, a social work assistant within the multi-disciplinary team at Donard Family Practice, acknowledged that, with the cost-of- living crisis, “donations have been low of late”.
“Everybody is feeling the pinch,” she added.

By highlighting a dip in donations, it is hoped to encourage new donors, as well as reminding those who have supported the hygiene bank in the past that supplies are needed more than ever.

“When this initiative was established it was aimed at addressing the unmet need for hygiene products amongst individuals and families alike, and it was great to see so many people getting behind it,” said Julie.

“The bare essentials are all that we are asking for.

“From a toothbrush and toothpaste to a bar of soap, a face cloth, shampoo and conditioner, face wash, make-up remover and antiperspirants.

“What we need to emphasise is that it does not have to be anything expensive.

“A 99p bottle of shampoo goes a long way in a household and works as well as something which could be seen as far more extravagant.”

Thanking the college and participating pharmacies for allowing their premises to be used as collection points, Julie continued: “We are all making changes when it comes to saving when and where we can, but hopefully if as many people make the smallest of contributions to our appeal, it will go a long way and make things better for others.”

“Please try to donate whatever you can. A little will go a long way, and just remember it is the basics, donations do not need to be fancy. It’s about helping people, and believe me when I say, the people who receive these donations are so appreciative and really will benefit.”

She concluded by reminding people that donations need not be limited to females, as it has also been identified that men and boys are struggling when it comes to purchasing toiletries.

Subscribe Today

Read the full article.

Full story inside this week’s print edition or Login/subscribe to access our Digital Edition & App

More articles

This website uses cookies. Using this website means you are okay with this. You can find out more and learn how to manage cookies by clicking the 'More Info' link.