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Store’s fashionable way to help Swindon Samaritans centre
Buy this photo » Sue Sainsbury on the catwalk
FASHION was at the centre of proceedings as shoppers flocked to the aid of Swindon & District Samaritans in Bridgemead yesterday.
As a part of their year-long partnership, Sainsbury’s in Paddington Drive and the Swindon Samaritans organised an inaugural fashion show at the supermarket.
With 30 models plucked from the staff rota, as well as their family and friends, the show was a chance to sample some of their own-brand clothing range while raising money for the emotional support charity.
With a makeshift catwalk laid out in the store’s cafe, shoppers were able to make donations by buying refreshments and contributing to the collection tubs.
Sue Sainsbury, 50, cafe manager and charity co-ordinator at the Bridgemead store, said: “Everyone’s been very nervous in the run-up to the event, with some of the kids acting a bit hyper.
“This is the first show of its kind in this store. We are upbeat about this setting a precedent and possibly doing bigger and better shows in the future.”
The partnership, which began in June after a comprehensive selection process, has already yielded almost £2,000 in donations to the Samaritans, who require £100 every day to keep their centre in Curtis Street open.
The pair are hoping to bring in near £10,000 by the time their agreement comes to an end in June 2014.
The target was set after Sainsbury’s helped to secure £10,000 for their 2012/13 charity, CALM.
Linda Perry, a volunteer at the Samaritans, attended yesterday’s parade and couldn’t emphasise the importance of the partnership to the charity enough.
“It’s critical for Samaritans to have this partnership. We are responsible for raising all our funds to maintain the service we provide,” she said.
“We have to find a diversity of funding to maintain the service. Having this relationship within range of us is perfect for raising our local profile.”
Sandra Reeves, 59, and Jade Cannings, nine, were the first pair on stage. Sandra works in the clothing section at the Bridgemead store, whilst Jade is a relation of hers.
Sandra said: “It was a bit nervewracking, but I’m pleased we’ve done it now.”