Emergency Clothing Project supports families in Oldham as cost of living continues to bite.

Date published: 18 June 2022

The Salvation Army in Oldham Fitton Hill has launched the Emergency Clothing Project to support those struggling to make ends meet as the cost of living continues to soar.  

Providing pre-loved clothing to cover a period of seven days, the project works to save people money as energy costs continues to rise. 

With many families having a limited number of garments in their wardrobes and needing to wash them more regularly, the ‘seven items for seven days’ idea reduces the need to use the washing machine to once a week, saving on energy costs, which have recently rocketed.  

An emergency clothing package includes: 

  • Seven trousers/bottoms 
  • Seven tops 
  • Seven jumpers 
  • Seven items of socks and underwear 
  • A coat 

An emergency package in some cases can also include footwear.  

The project, which is in association with local community project Real Education Empowering Lives (REEL) was set up by The Salvation Army’s Family Worker at the Oldham Fitton Hill church, Kim Rogers, and the scheme recently saw 17 individual referrals in one day, proving that the need is very much present within the Oldham community. 

Kim said: “I knew food poverty was a thing, but I didn’t realise that clothing poverty was very real too. Then to couple that with the rise in energy prices and families using their washing machine, in some cases numerous times a week to just keep the limited amount of clothes they have clean, the Emergency Clothing Project is invaluable. 

“Clothes are expensive. Food is expensive. Everything has gone up and people are having to find extra money to just survive. This project is allowing us to see just how necessary it is as demand for the service continues to grow.” 

Kim recalls the turning point for encouraging her to create the scheme: “A lady that was using our food bank service innocently asked if I knew whether a baby grow could be stretched as she was struggling to cope with the rate in which her baby was growing, teamed with the amount of money she had left after paying her bills, there was just no extra for more clothes.  

“She then went on to ask if the legs could be cut off in order to make the baby grow last throughout the summer months too and I was saddened to hear the desperate measures that she was going to, because she didn’t have money to clothe her own child. If people are struggling with feeding their children, it is more than likely that they are struggling with clothing them too, and that is a worry that we hope to relieve.” 

The Emergency Clothing project works on a referral basis from social services, doctors, schools and the local authority. Self-referral is also accepted by calling The Salvation Army corps (church) on 0161 628 6808 / 07833 086343 or by emailing oldham.fittonhill@salvationarmy.org.uk.   

The Salvation Army Oldham Fitton Hill also has a Just Giving page which can be found click here and whilst all financial donations are welcome people are encouraged to give only what they can afford.  



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