Helping hand for the self-employed in Wigan

An organisation tackling food waste is offering a helping hand to self-employed workers struggling to make ends meet.

Friday, 10th April 2020, 11:36 am
Updated Friday, 10th April 2020, 11:38 am
Shirley Southworth, from Fur Clemt

Wigan-based Fur Clemt, which distributes food suitable to be eaten that would otherwise have gone to landfill, is offering free hampers to help tide people over during the coronavirus pandemic.

They will include essential items, such as meat, fresh fruit and vegetables, and milk, as well as a few treats.

Shirley Southworth, from Fur Clemt, has been self-employed for most of her working life and wanted to do something to help after it was revealed Government cash would not be available until June.

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She said: “When you are self-employed it can be a nightmare and you are often at the bottom when they are handing out cash. I’m glad the Government has stepped in to give cash, but it’s not available until June and it’s a long time if you don’t have reserves.

“Self-employed people often don’t have reserves because they make sure their staff and suppliers are paid before they pay themselves.”

The hampers are being made using items collected by Fur Clemt, with food not often donated, such as fresh meat, being bought.

But it is hoped that food manufacturers and other businesses seeing a rise in profits at this time, such as due to people stockpiling when shopping in supermarkets, will consider helping self-employed workers by donating food or cash for the hampers.

Shirley said: “We want to encourage big businesses to remember that while they are having a boom in their income, there are lots of businesses that aren’t, and maybe they could think about helping.”

The hampers are available for free to people who are self-employed, but they are asked to consider supporting Fur Clemt in some way once the pandemic is over and they are back on their feet.

Shirley said: “We are saying that if you are helping people, please remember us. Whether they come to a gourmet night or purchase a hamper in future, for example. Support us in some way.

“We don’t want any cash now, when they are struggling, but maybe they could help us in other ways. Maybe a fridge engineer could look at our fridge or a designer could make a logo, whatever they could do to help.”

To request a hamper or find out more about Fur Clemt, go to