Oxfam has announced that it will be closing its high street shops in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Oxfam has around 600 high street shops in the UK and around 20,000 Oxfam shop volunteers. The shops will close at the end of business on Saturday 21 March to protect the health of its staff, volunteers and customers, and remain shut until the risk reduces.
Oxfam’s Deputy Trading Director, Anne Webb said:
“It is with a heavy heart that we have decided to shut our shops until the danger of the coronavirus has eased.
“But it’s absolutely the right thing to do as the safety of our staff, volunteers and shoppers comes first. Some of our volunteers are elderly, and especially vulnerable to the infection, and we are acutely conscious of our responsibilities towards them.”
Oxfam is asking the public not to leave donations outside shops after they close but is planning to operate hubs where people can deposit them. More details on which will be announced in due course.
In the last financial year, Oxfam shops raised £17.3 million after costs – contributing £1.4m a month to the organisation’s work.