A COMMUNITY charity organisation has been boosted by a new partnership with wholesale company Nisa.
Kingsley Village Shop and Post Office is part of the Kingsley Organisation which supports disabled people in pursuing their ambitions through enabling opportunity and choice.
The charity provides activities and training in work and employment skills, a key part of which is delivered through the organisation’s head office where there is also a small shop and post office.
Helen Dayson, chief executive officer for the Kingsley Organisation, said: “Our village shop was established to provide realistic retail training for disabled people and a much-needed service to the local rural community.
“It creates meaningful opportunities for our participants and volunteers to gain retail skills and work experience such as operating the till, numeracy and money skills, stock control, customer service, food hygiene, shop displays and promotions, social and communication skills and basic employability skills.”
The move to Nisa was prompted by a need to improve the range available to shoppers, particularly in fresh and chilled produce.
Helen continued: “We are really excited about working with Nisa because the range we now have access to is so much better than it ever has been before.
“We are only a very small store and so I am trying to understand what we can and cannot stock and get the range right, but the fact I can now get all my fruit and vegetables from Nisa and not have to go to lots of different suppliers is fantastic for us.
“The shop is a vehicle for delivering education and training and any money we make in the store goes straight back into the charity. Our intention is to give people greater choice, independency and control and if Nisa can help us to make a profit from the shop at the same time, that would be marvellous.”
The footfall through the doors is around 800 people every week, with people using the facilities for classes such as ballroom dancing and Pilates, as well as the Montessori nursery which is housed within the same building.
Amy Hardy, retail development manager for Nisa, said: “When I first stepped foot into the Kingsley organisation to follow up an interest from them to join Nisa, I was instantly struck by the passion and commitment there is in making the shop a success.
“The store is not in the business to make large profits, just to break even. But I want to help Helen achieve a profit and be able to put more into the charity to support the great work they do at the centre.”