Volunteer with donation box with clothes

Birmingham Students Set Up Commonwealth Games Donation Point To Tackle Clothing Poverty

Ella Kipling August 6, 2022

Students at the University of Birmingham have teamed up with Sharewear to link with The Commonwealth Games and work towards alleviating clothing poverty through their clothing donation points on campus.

Sharewear, a charity which provides emergency clothing, shoes and bedding, and relies on donations, is placing a focus on the importance of spreading sporting joy this Games by collecting clothes to help those in need partake in physical activity.

They said: ‘Participating in sport presents people with the opportunity to have fun, boost their mental health and well-being, and make long lasting connections. At the Commonwealth Games, these benefits have never been clearer – the atmosphere is buzzing, and every athlete is excited to be doing what they love.

‘Shareware celebrates being able to play sport, without any worry about what you’re wearing or what you look like. It is Sharewear’s mission to ensure that as many people as possible are able to live comfortably with healthy, fulfilling and enriching experiences.’

One of the students on the project, Daniella Southin, told Freshered that she got involved through one of the university’s Career Network workshops. Students were put into teams and given the task of thinking up ways to promote the Sharewear charity in Birmingham.

‘Since we were on campus and Games were beginning to set up on the sports pitches, it seemed a good idea to utilise the university’s involvement in the Games to our advantage and since Sharewear relies mostly on its clothing donations over its monetary donations, we decided to have collection bins on campus,’ she said.

The students were granted £500 by the uni to run the project and applied to have bins at multiple locations such as the Athletes’ Village, and the Commonwealth Games store in the city centre. However, all of these were refused, which led to the collection points being based outside the university’s library on campus.

Social media has been a hugely important way to spread the word about the project, and the students contacted a range of athletes and Hometown Heroes. Southin said that they are ‘so grateful’ to everyone who has helped spread the word.

How You Can Help

You can support Sharewear by donating clothes you no longer want or wear at the clothing collection points, located at the University of Birmingham library.

The collection points are under a km away from the hockey and squash venues, which are being held at the uni.

Sharewear are accepting all clothing donations as long as they are clean and wearable. They are looking in particular for sportswear donations, to endure they can provide people ‘with the clothing they need to undertake exercise and fitness in a comfortable and dignified manner.’

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Ella is the Head of Content at Freshered and also works a freelance journalist at GRV Media, writing for HITC and Reality Titbit. Her interests lie in news and anything culture related including entertainment, musicals, books, and social media. Ella is also a big supporter of student media and writes for her university’s newspaper as well as hosting her own show on the radio station.