How our charity shops save lives

5 March 2016        

Category: BHF Shops

A volunteer serving a customer in a shop The Daily Telegraph has today covered a report by an organisation called the True & Fair Foundation which we believe unfairly criticises the profitability of charity shops in the UK.

The report gives a misleading interpretation of the vital contribution charity shops make to improving people’s lives through the funds they generate.

Turning donated items into treatments

For many years, our charity shops have turned people’s unwanted goods in to millions of pounds for medical research that is today saving and improving the lives of heart patients. Without our retail chain and the support of our dedicated volunteers, we would have far less money to invest in research that is helping to fight heart disease. 

As we explained in our statement, “The BHF’s retail activities are by far the largest and most profitable of any charity in the UK with over 700 stores nationwide. In 2014/2015 our shops recycled 60,000 tonnes of items and generated profits of £29.3 million to fund life saving research. In addition to raising this significant sum for research, our shops are a valuable way of promoting all aspects of the BHF in local communities.”

This is the second media story based on a report by the ‘True and Fair Foundation’, the first of which resulted in a correction being printed due to its misleading analysis of the way charities operate.

A life saving contribution

We feel it’s important to set the record straight because money we raise through our charity shops in combination with your donations fund more than half of all cardiovascular research that happens in UK universities and hospitals.

Over the last 50 years, these funds have supported the breakthroughs that have helped to halve death rates from heart and circulatory disease in the UK. 

However, seven million people in the UK still live with the daily burden of heart and circulatory disease and it’s responsible for more than a quarter of all deaths. There is still so much more we need to do.