Our first meeting was an opportunity to invite over the member of youth parliament for Bath (Jacob Bishop-Ponte) for a discussion on all things manifesto! This was a great chance to share relatable matters on each others manifestos and see how we could most effectively work together. Please see below for some of the key points that were raised:
- Youth Reps will collaborate with other organisations such as Youth Connect, Southside etc to take our joint causes to the council chamber for a debate. This will (hopefully) be the start of a regular collaboration where we can all share and grow stronger with our common causes.
- Organise a meeting with local MPs Jacob Rees Mogg & Ben Howlett whist we’re in London.
- Have our very own Youth Reps tree at the “Forest of Imagination”
Some really positive outcomes were reached from this night and we all left with a good sense of optimism. Please make a special note of point 2. Did I mention we’re going to the Houses of Parliament on June 6th?!
The following week was a pleasure to have Lesley Kinver (Three Ways School) give up some of her time and offer us some support and guidance around opening a charity shop. They’d recently done a project not dissimilar to what we want and opened a two week pop-up shop on Walcot Street. We ascertained that it was a resounding success and a great chance to promote causes, and get young people involved by developing their vocational / social skills.
What we learned:
- No rent required for pop shops from local charities! This is applicable in the outer areas of town – Walcot St etc.
- 80% reduction on business rates / One off payment of £60 for utilities.
- They took £100 per day in takings and a final sum of £1300.
- Junior Gateway club ran a similar pop up project on Stall St and payed £900 rent (two weeks) with a return of £7000!
- Three Ways had no budget for the project.
- Our public liability insurance can cover for the shop.
- All their donations were given by staff at the school / same goes with the advertising.
- Sell plants outside shop?
- Customers didn’t necessarily want clothes & shoes – more bric a brac. When selling electrical stuff we need to say it’s not been tested. I need to look into this further.
- Blanket pricing structure on all clothes etc – customers would often pay more. Individual pricing for other items.
- All surplus clothes can be sold to bulk buyers at the end of the lease.
- We can procure rails / tills from Ebay. Shelving will often come with the unit.
- Xmas market allots one space for a local charity – could we bid for this?
- Have a collection box in-store.
- Young people had a sense of ownership with the store.
- Biggest challenge was packing away – many hands make light work.
Plans are afoot for an October Half Term opening! This will be a flexible target, as we want to give it the best we have at the first time of asking – if successful, this will be a regular money stream and should feed young people into the employment world in a positive and safe way.