The jeans that no longer fit you and the leopard-print shirt you don’t wear because it’s so last year may not be worth anything to you but they’re invaluable to unemployed women in informal settlements across Joburg. Melrose Arch has teamed up with The Clothing Collective, a non-profit organisation that specialises in the collection and distribution of second-hand clothing, to host a Collection Container, making it easy for visitors to the precinct to donate unwanted clothes.
Second-hand clothing (men’s, women’s and children’s wear), shoes and bedding, all in decent condition, of course, can be deposited in the Collection Container near Woolworths in the lower retail Galleria, next to the escalators. The clothing is then sorted and distributed to destitute women in informal settlements who then sell the clothing to raise funds to start businesses of their own. The women are provided with training and guidance along the way.
“We encourage the women in our programme to hit sales targets that will provide at least enough income to support their families,” explains Daniel Machlup, founder of The Clothing Collective. “Our training provides women with support and teaches them business skills, with the end goal being to empower the women to create sustainable businesses for themselves.”
For more information, visit www.theclothingcollective.org.