The Salvation Army runs a lot of skills training centres to help young people with learning disabilities learn a trade and develop additional skills, such as retail and customer service. The Recycles Merseyside centre in Liverpool is so successful that it is moving to bigger premises where it will train even more young people and set them up for gainful employment.
Recycles is moving from Liverpool Stoneycroft church to Bulky Bob’s in the Old Swan area. Bulky Bob’s is a furniture reuse social enterprise and charity and it’s providing the space to Recycles Merseyside completely rent-free.
Service as normal
Recycles Merseyside’s primary purpose is to teach youngsters how to refurbish and maintain old bicycles. Old bicycles are donated by the public and once they have been zhooshed up they are sold at incredibly discounted prices so that others experiencing financial difficulties can afford to buy bikes for their kids or for their own commute to work.
Bulky Bob’s is the perfect partner for Recycles because it collects large, unwanted items on behalf of Liverpool Council. It frequently gets old bicycles that can be reconditioned and resold.
Recycles Merseyside Project Co-ordinator Phil Doragh expressed his gratitude to The Salvation Army, “I’m so grateful to Sam Tomlin the Commanding Officer of Liverpool Stoneycroft Salvation Army church for supporting us these past three years. Being based at the church really helped establish Recycles as an important service at the heart of the community. It allowed us to help so many young and vulnerable people gain confidence and skills and made it possible for countless other people to buy really good quality second-hand bikes at an affordable price.”
Commenting on the move, Doragh said, “Now we’ve moved in with Bulky Bob’s, the future’s looking even brighter for us and we’re all looking forward to welcoming even more young people with learning disabilities to train and volunteer with us and be part of the Recycles’ journey.”
Shaun Doran, Bulky Bob’s CEO, said that it is a great partnership that will keep perfectly usable items out of landfills, while providing valuable on-the-job training and work experience to youngsters who are ordinarily marginalised by society. What’s more, the community benefits from access to low-cost or even free bikes.
Recycles Merseyside is already open for business. You can visit the Facebook page for news and updates.
Liverpool Salvation Army Schemes
The Recycles Merseyside scheme is affiliated to Steps to Work, another scheme by The Salvation Army that gives young people with learning disabilities work training opportunities. Youngsters can also develop their skills by volunteering at the scheme.
Steps to Work will set up base at The Salvation Army’s Strawberry Field training hub and visitor centre. The hub officially opens this summer. You can keep up to date with progress on the hub’s website, where you can also buy Forever Strawberry Field merchandise.