STRATFORD Uniform Bank will be kitting out pupils for at least another year.
The charity was set up 12 months ago by mum of four Kirsty Powell to provide much-needed supplies for parents and carers struggling to buy school clothes.
And it has celebrated its first anniversary by receiving a community award and securing funding for a further year after winning a Thriving Communities Award from Orbit.
The housing association originally provided funding for Stratford Uniform Bank to purchase a former shipping container where all the uniforms could be stored at Stratford School.
Cheryl Flavell, placemaking and partnerships manager at Orbit, who nominated Kirsty for the award, said: “I have been so impressed with Kirsty’s drive and determination that I really wanted her to gain recognition for everything she does.
“To take the uniform bank from nothing to what it is today is an amazing achievement. It is so well so used by so many families; it is clear there is a definite need for it and something Stratford has been crying out for.
“So far, Stratford Uniform Bank has helped 234 children with school uniforms and has saved around £20,000 worth of uniforms going to landfill, which is a fantastic accolade. In addition, around 70 per cent of applications are from Orbit customers and before this facility was available, parents were often forced to use pay day loans to purchase these items, so it really has proved invaluable to many people.”
Kirsty was thrilled the charity could continue helping families in the district.
She said: “I started the uniform bank after being shocked how by many parents were struggling with the increasing costs and it has gone from strength to strength in its first year.
“I am delighted to receive this award and I hope that I can continue to help more families in the future.”