The Cowshed

The Cowshed

At a glance


  • Poverty relief

Other details

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Geographical remit: 


The Cowshed provides practical support to people of all backgrounds in a time of personal crisis. Our aim is to lovingly provide excellent quality cleaned and ironed clothes, bedding, curtains, toiletries, toys, books and other essential items free to anyone in need in a positive and non-judgemental way.


The items we provide to our clients are donated second hand from the public or new from retailers and manufacturers and are then sorted, washed (if second hand) and ironed at our donation centre and provided to our clients. The idea is that our clients feel that they are receiving a gift rather than some old clothes that are over-worn, marked or damaged. Our clients are referred to us through social services, schools, churches, charities, Citizens Advice, doctors, and other health care assistants. We operate two referral centres in Reading and Wokingham which cover all of Berkshire but hope to expand to other counties as funds allow. We have a three-fold impact: recycling used clothing and items, helping those most in need in our communities and creating a community craft group that repurposes our surplus donated textiles into items to sell to raise money and into tote bags for us to put our referral clothes packs into. In addition to our core activities, we run a variety of other projects including our Christmas Toy appeal, Prom outfit service, Bra fitting service, Noahs Box, Welcome to the World essentials for new babies and our Ukraine project where we have supported hundreds of refugees with welcome packs of essentials and the opportunity to come and select clothing, to name but a few.

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