Kent & Medway Community Sharewear’s first year

Kent & Medway Community Sharewear is celebrating an incredible first year.

The SATEDA-run project was launched in March 2023 to offer women who are struggling financially high-quality donated clothing for themselves and their families, free of charge.

Since then, we have received a hefty 4 tonnes of donations and clothed a total of 838 women and children.

We launched Kent & Medway Community Sharewear to meet an obvious need. Funding from Orchard Community Energy enabled us to acquire a franchise from the well-established Sharewear Clothing Scheme, which aims to tackle clothing poverty while reducing the amount of clothes going to landfill.

Donations from energy-from-waste operator enfinium, The Skinner Charities Foundation and two Kent County Councillors, plus a partnership with Southern Housing, allowed us to set up two bases – at Fort Luton in Chatham and Kemsley Wellbeing Hub – where we run open days twice a month, plus a mobile service which visits support organisations all over Swale.

“We’ve been amazed by the response – both by the number of women who have used Sharewear in our first year and the number of donations,” said SATEDA Communities Team Manager Gina Francis.

The project’s success is largely thanks to a committed group of volunteers who give up their time to sort and size donations, make up orders for other organisations, and help women find what they need.

Kent & Medway Community Sharewear is available to all women who cannot afford clothes, shoes and toiletries regardless of whether they are affected by domestic abuse. Find out how to access the service, or how to donate and volunteer, here.