YouTube star Emily Hartridge and TV presenter Matt Johnson have joined forces with Mind to film a rundown of the most unusual donations to our charity shops. From a live hand grenade, to a stuffed weasel, to second hand bondage gear – Mind shops have seen it all, but with the charity relying on good quality donations to keep going, the duo are hoping to encourage people to give generously this festive season.
The video, entitled Mind the Marrow, was filmed at the Mind shop in Kentish Town and has been posted to Emily’s YouTube channel.
Each year, Mind shops see an increase in custom over Christmas, however, this is not always matched by increased donations, leaving some stores with empty shelves. Since each bag of saleable stock donated to Mind can be worth up to £30, the charity is calling on supporters to help replenish supplies. All proceeds go to fund the charity’s work such as the Mind Infoline, information and advice services, and the campaigning Mind does to secure a better life for the one in four people who experience a mental health problem every year.
Matt Johnson, Mind Ambassador, said “We had a brilliant time filming our video at the Mind shop in Kentish Town. I even got to try my hand at serving customers and answering the phones! It really gave me an insight into how hard the staff and volunteers work to help the charity and I hope people take away the serious side of our silly video and donate to their local Mind shop this Christmas.”
Andrew Vale, Director of Mind retail, said “We know the run up to Christmas is all about shopping, and we’re delighted people are choosing to buy gifts at their local Mind shop, but we need more donations to keep up with demand. Donating to a Mind shop is an easy way to give to charity that doesn’t cost a penny. Stuffed weasels and live bombs aside, we accept clothing and accessories, books, bric-a-brac, household linens, music and children’s games and toys.”
The full list of unusual donations to Mind shops:
- A live hand grenade donated to the Mind shop in Ipswich. The bomb squad were called to remove the grenade and part of the town had to be closed off.
- A live cat, donated to the Mind shop in Whitley bay.
- A box of marrows
- A stuffed weasel, donated anonymously to the Mind shop in Brighton
- A bin liner full of candles burnt down to the wick, donated to the Mind shop in Herford.
- A used diary for 2014, (the donor suggested crossing out all dates and rewriting them in so the right day corresponded, as well as crossing out or writing round the entries they had put in on each day the year before.) Donated to the Mind shop in Whitley bay
- Sticking with the cat theme: a half used bag of cat litter, donated to the Mind shop in Bexhill
- A disintegrated carrier bag which was mistaken for human ashes
- The Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy, along with edible nipple tassels and a whip
- A giant inflatable dinosaur, which took the manager at the Stoke Newington shop all day to blow up, only to be purchased within 10 minutes so she had to deflate.