HRC open for school uniform donations

Mid and East Antrim Borough Council is once again running the very successful School Uniform Scheme, which is being delivered in partnership with Mid and East Antrim Community Advice Services (MEACAS) and supported by Volunteer Now.

Friday, 25th June 2021, 8:20 am

The school uniform scheme is accepting all good quality garments including trousers, coats, skirts, cardigans, blazers, shoes, jackets, trainers, jumpers, sports kits, polo shirts and dresses.

Donations of good quality, clean school uniforms can be left at each of the borough’s Household Recycling Centres - including Ballymena’s Waveney Road Recycling Centre - until July 9. At the end of the donation period, all uniforms will be safely sorted in line with all government restrictions and, in late July, Council will announce details of where families can collect items of school uniform ‘free of charge’. There is no qualifying criteria or referral process. The scheme, which was piloted in July 2019 and has been providing good quality pre-worn school uniforms ever since, has proven to be a lifeline for many families, particularly during lockdown when charity shops were closed.Last year, families were able to telephone MEACAS and arrange to collect uniform items safely (subject to availability). Council’s Poverty Action Group took the initiative forward as the rising costs of school uniforms is a source of emotional and financial stress for many low income families.

Deputy Mayor, 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.”

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 make a donation, you will still need to reserve a timeslot on the online booking system - select ‘School Uniform Scheme’. HRC opening times can be found at www.midandeastantrim.gov.uk/resident/waste-recycling/