Ty Iolo residents receive donations of personal items from The Hygiene Bank
RESIDENTS at the Vale of Glamorgan Council’s Ty Iolo hostel have benefitted from donations from The Hygiene Bank, an organisation that provides personal care items to those that need them most.
Ty Iolo offers individuals facing homelessness accommodation in a 21-room complex, each with its own bathroom and four offering disabled access. It also has a lounge and large kitchen.
Recently, The Hygiene Bank’s Wales Coordinator Caroline Volrath got in touch, offering products to those staying there.
The donations have gone to families and vulnerable single people, with the amount and variety able to satisfy a number of particularly specific requests.
Among the items sent to Ty Iolo are sanitary products, shampoo, shower gel, toothpaste, shaving kit and nappies.
The Hygiene Bank is a national charity that began in the South East, inspired by the Ken Loach film I Daniel Blake, which highlighted how badly individuals in certain circumstances need personal products.
Cllr Ben Gray, Vale of Glamorgan Council Cabinet Member for Health and Social Care, said: “Ty Iolo is a fantastic service that offers some of the Vale’s most vulnerable residents support when they need it most.
“It provides assistance to those that may find themselves in desperate situations and this partnership with The Hygiene Banks only adds to the help available.
“We are extremely grateful to Caroline for the generous donations received so far. They have made a real difference to the recipients.”
Caroline, from Bonvilston, established the charity in Wales and quickly partnered with Ty Iolo.
The Hygiene Bank encourages the community to donate new, unopened toiletries and essential beauty grooming products via collection boxes situated in shops, service providers and public services.
Members of the public are also encouraged to be collectors for their office, sporting group, friends and family.
Donated products are sorted into essential toiletries and gifts and further subdivided by product type.
The products are then reboxed or bagged according to type and distributed to charity partners, who in turn give them out to families and individuals in crisis.
Caroline said: “Long before people go to a food bank, they stop buying toiletries, hygiene poverty has been identified as 'a hidden crisis' in Britain and one that is growing, according to a report in 2017 by In Kind Direct. With little money to cover the cost of everyday essentials, some families are being forced to choose between buying food or buying personal hygiene items.
“Hygiene poverty is shaming, isolating and excluding. Clean hair, skin and teeth are not a privilege. Tampons, toothpaste and a toothbrush are not luxury items.
“A very important part of our ethos is that what is donated locally, helps local people so all our projects help the very community you live in. We currently have several drop-off locations for donations within the Vale of Glamorgan and would like to expand across Wales.
“We are keen to hear from volunteers who would like to help to set up drop-off and collection points in their local area, as well as any companies who would consider hosting a collection point in their offices or may be able to help in any other way.”
To donate, contact Caroline at firstname.lastname@example.org