The Emporium Somerset in Mantle Street will launch a collection for Arc, formerly Taunton Association for the Homeless, on Thursday, December 6 during its late-night Christmas shopping evening from 6pm to 8.30pm.
Co-owner Cato Cooper said: “At this time of year we can often get caught up in the frenzy of Christmas shopping and finding the perfect gifts for loved-ones, so this year we’re asking people to take a moment and think about those less fortunate than ourselves.
“I couldn’t imagine what it is like to be homeless and to sleep on a cold pavement at any time of year, let alone at this time of year when the cold weather is setting in – which is why we’ve decided to launch our collection for Arc.
“We’re asking our generous customers who come along to this late-night open evening to perhaps give a small donation to the charity. We’ll have collection pots in the shop on the night for people to make donations and the collection will continue until the end of February, 2019.”
Arc is a homeless charitable organisation supporting more than 450 people per year. Its mission is to end rough sleeping in the South West through housing, assisting, supporting and empowering homeless people in Somerset.
Donations can be made at any time from December 6 until the end of February, 2019 at the shop, or online at https://goo.gl/CkHqbD.
Cato added: “This will be our third late-night shopping evening of the year and they have all been a huge success. The shop will be full of Christmas decorations and there’ll be festive music from Mandy Saunders and Steve Ogilvie from Gigface for people to enjoy too.
“We decided to host a third as a ‘Thank you’ to our customers who’ve been super supportive throughout the year and to give them the opportunity to browse for gifts outside of our normal opening hours. Many of them work and can’t get to us in the day and have family commitments at weekends.”
There will be free mince pies and mulled cider as well as a non-alcoholic alternative for everyone.
Rosie Sandy, Fundraising and Communications Assistant at Arc, said: “We’re delighted to have support from The Emporium this Christmas. We think it’s so important for local communities to stick together, and with the Emporium as a local business and Arc as a local charity, this fits perfectly!
“Donations received and awareness raised through the Emporium’s charity collection will add to the support we can provide for local homeless individuals, ensuring they have safe and welcoming accommodation and the help they need to move forwards. Thank you so much to all those involved.”