Clothing company donates over £5,000 worth of clothes to Derby homeless charity

Steve McConnell, Director of Morrison McConnell International.

Derbyshire based clothing company Morrison McConnell International, synonymous with brands such as Viyella, Peter England and Tootal, has donated a combination of over 500 jumpers, shirts and other items of clothing to Derby charity, Gears of Goodwill.

The donation is intended to help the team support homeless people to stay warm during the winter period, as well as giving them the chance to access work wear for interviews and employment.

Gears of Goodwill was established in 2015 by a group of local bikers, with the intention of supporting local homeless people. It was purposefully set up for local Derby residents to go out on the city streets and meet homelessness head on, helping less fortunate people get their lives back.

Richard Smith from Derby Gears of Goodwill said: “For over two years Derby Gears of Goodwill has run a weekly street kitchen every Friday, where along with hot food, drinks and sandwiches we give out clothing and sleeping bags directly to homeless people, plus offer them a friend to talk to. This fantastic donation from Morrison McConnell International will help us provide new, clean and warm clothes to local people that are having a tough time and really can benefit from a helping hand to get their lives back on track.”

Steve McConnell, Sales Director at Morrison McConnell International, said: “The work of Derby’s Gears of Goodwill in supporting homelessness is exceptional and we were keen to support in any way we could. Given our extensive clothing ranges, we were in a position to provide practical items such as shirts and jumpers that can offer much needed warmth and comfort as well as giving suitable clothing for work or going for interviews.”

The charity, Gears of Goodwill, aims to eventually have a charity shop and cafe with somewhere for homeless people to have a shower and a hot meal and get advice. They hope to achieve this by charity ride outs where they’ll ask other bike clubs and groups to join them, plus arranging other fundraising events.

Richard Smith added: “Everything we do is reliant on the generous donations from supporters, the time given by volunteers and the goodwill of the local community. We also hope to raise profiles of homeless soldiers and help them get the professional support by working with partner charity Soldiers Off the Streets. All this will hopefully build strong ties and friendships with other bike groups and clubs and local charities, where we can all link up and work together to make a difference for the homeless people of Derby.”