The Christmas decorations are all packed away and it’s that time of year when many people start to think of tidying the house and getting rid of things they no longer want or need. It is the ideal time for a sort out and gifting unneeded or unwanted items to charity.
A new charity shop opened in Belper in December 2017 run by the Derbyshire Wildlife Trust. The town has the privilege of being home to the first shop the Trust has opened anywhere. Derbyshire Wildlife Trust is one of 47 local Trusts around the UK working to promote and protect local wildlife.
They are the only organisation in Derbyshire working to protect all wildlife across the whole county. The Trust manages 43 nature reserves, including moorland, wetlands, woodlands and wildflower meadows. We have several very close to Belper, this can be found at www.derbyshirewildlifetrust.org.uk/wildlife/reserves.
We are very fortunate and privileged to be able to live in such a beautiful part of the country and it is good to be supportive to an organisation whose work it is to look after both land and wildlife.
The shop sells clothes, shoes, accessories, bric-a-brac, books, DVDs etc donated by the public. It also sells many fantastic new items which can help us to look after the natural world. There is a whole variety of bird feeders and bird food, plus nest boxes to encourage birds to raise their families in our gardens. There are bug hotels, food for butterflies, wildflower seeds and numerous books for both children and adults to help with identification of species. There are other interesting books which encourage us to realise the variety of God’s amazing creation, helping us to enjoy what is all around us and also understand what we can do to look after wildlife before it disappears.
The Trust needs help from the people of Belper in two ways, firstly after the Christmas rush there is a need for donated items for the shop which can be gift aided if you pay tax. Secondly, they also need more volunteers to help with their ongoing work. They organise work parties to manage nature reserves and run activities to help children enjoy being outdoors. They also have plans for more shops to help raise the money needed for ongoing work.
The Trust have lots of exciting plans to expand what they can do for the wildlife of Derbyshire and its great fun to be able to help with this. I can speak from personal experience as I started to volunteer in the Belper shop when it opened.
By Anne Clarke