Waltham Forest Echo

Waltham Forest Echo

New charity shop for disabled adults opening in Chingford

The shop aims to help disabled young adults transition out of school

Hero for New charity shop for disabled adults opening in Chingford
Kith & Kids staff and CEO (right) in front of the new ELSware shop (credit: Kith & Kids)
By Victoria Munro 15 February 2022

A new charity shop will open in Chingford this weekend to support disabled young adults live more fulfilling lives.A new charity shop will open in Chingford this weekend to support disabled young adults live more fulfilling lives.

The ELSware shop at 16 Old Church Road will officially open on 19th February and is owned by disability charity Kith & Kids, set up by London parents in 1969.The ELSware shop at 16 Old Church Road will officially open on 19th February and is owned by disability charity Kith & Kids, set up by London parents in 1969.

In addition to raising money for young adults with autism and learning disabilities, the shop will also give them training and work experience to help transition from education to adult life.In addition to raising money for young adults with autism and learning disabilities, the shop will also give them training and work experience to help transition from education to adult life.

Kith & Kids CEO Marjolein de Vries said the shop aimed to fill the “gap in support many young adults with learning disabilities fall into” after turning 19, which often left them “isolated and tied to their homes”.Kith & Kids CEO Marjolein de Vries said the shop aimed to fill the “gap in support many young adults with learning disabilities fall into” after turning 19, which often left them “isolated and tied to their homes”.

She said: “The new boutique will make the transition from classroom learning to actual work experience much more do-able for our trainees, as it will be a built-in, familiar part of their course. She said: “The new boutique will make the transition from classroom learning to actual work experience much more do-able for our trainees, as it will be a built-in, familiar part of their course. 

“They will know that they can go elsewhere (ELSware) in the community for further learning and other opportunities, while helping to sell wares in support of the project itself. “They will know that they can go elsewhere (ELSware) in the community for further learning and other opportunities, while helping to sell wares in support of the project itself. 

“Some of the other opportunities include sports and social activities that, together with their work training, open new horizons for much more fulfilling lives.”“Some of the other opportunities include sports and social activities that, together with their work training, open new horizons for much more fulfilling lives.”

Rosemary and Louis Baker, who helped prepare the shop (credit: Kith & Kids)Rosemary and Louis Baker, who helped prepare the shop (credit: Kith & Kids)

One parent that uses the charity, Rosemary Baker, said it was like an “extended family” for her son Louis, who helped to outfit and decorate the new shop.One parent that uses the charity, Rosemary Baker, said it was like an “extended family” for her son Louis, who helped to outfit and decorate the new shop.

Her son Louis added: “I built the counter for the till and steamed clothes and wrote prices on the labels. It makes me feel good. I like my volunteer [mentor] and also the social activities we do like bowling and going to a restaurant.”Her son Louis added: “I built the counter for the till and steamed clothes and wrote prices on the labels. It makes me feel good. I like my volunteer [mentor] and also the social activities we do like bowling and going to a restaurant.”

To find out more, visit the charity’s website at www.kithandkids.org.uk, email them at elspshop@kithandkids.org.uk or call on 07506 827 373To find out more, visit the charity’s website at www.kithandkids.org.uk, email them at elspshop@kithandkids.org.uk or call on 07506 827 373