Although you haven’t heard from us for a while (sorry about that) we haven’t been idly doing nothing, we’ve been taking stock and considering our options.
Our priority is to come out of this crisis strong for the sake of our staff here in the UK and our producers in the less developed world. We are hearing positive stories of how fair trade companies are supporting their producers during the pandemic, but it’s extremely hard. We know our producers need us to sell their products even more now and in the future.
So we are taking action to ensure that we survive as a business. Having spoken to all our paid staff, we made the decision to furlough everyone except Edina, our manager. This means we will get 80% of furloughed staffs’ pay from the government. However we have made the commitment to top up the other 20% so all our staff will continue on full wages. We have not furloughed Edina so that she can work with Sarah and other volunteers in our new endeavours! We have also received the business grant from the government which is a great help.
We believe that people’s shopping habits are changing, as they shop on line now out of necessity they will continue doing it long term.
So we are creating a brand new e-commerce site (thanks to Newenglish Design owned by Carl one of our volunteer directors!). It will be attached to our current website. However once the e- commerce site is up our whole website will have a major overhaul and new look. This is something we had decided to do before the current crisis hit. To start with, we have focused on selling the basics, food and drink and toiletries plus spring/summer clothing but more products will be added over time. We are offering these as a ‘click and collect’ type option, limited delivery locally within Leicester plus Royal Mail post where appropriate.
We’ll delivery on Wednesdays (LE1 LE2 & LE3 only)
The shop will open Fridays and Saturdays 11am – 2pm for pick up and limited shopping.
Parcels will be sent out once a week on Wednesdays.
So we will be trading again very soon. All be it in a very different way. Edina and I hope we’ll be busy enough to need some help! So if you think you would be able to help pack up orders, be in the shop when we are open, or take out deliveries in your car or on a bike get in touch. (we will of course be practicing social distancing, hand washing etc) As we start doing this, we really don’t know what sort of response we’ll get. However we do know that for the sake of our producers in the developing world we need to try!