The Origin of The Merch Project
The Merch Project for women was founded in 2019, in North Wales, United Kingdom, and is a charity which provides support for women and girls across Wales. We provide shoes boxes full of essential products and clothing items for interviews, along with runing workshops, training and activities for women across Wales and beyond.
Women are referred to us from organisations such as job centres, work programmes, prisons, schools, colleges, universities, homeless shelters and other charities. You can also self refer yourself to our services.
The tangible impact that our service has on a woman’s confidence is something we have the privilege to witness every day, and our mission is to support, empower and guide women in need, often from the least advantaged communities, through improving their confidence, skills, employability, and educational attainments, in a supportive and safe environment.
We believe that no one’s future should be limited by their gender, background or income, and that all women should be supported to realise their ambitions, to discover their personal self-worth, and to develop their capacity to shape their futures.
Our wide range of high quality clothing is donated either from individuals or direct from retailers, and is then meticulously sorted and hung in our beautiful dressing rooms. We are environmentally conscious, and proud that everything which comes through our doors is given a new home.
During our first season of operation, our aim was to collect and distribute 60 Shoeboxes; just enough to serve the women of Bangor and Caernarfon. By word of mouth and the power of social media, we ended up receiving over 200 Shoeboxes. Donors also started spontaneously including notes of support and encouragement in their Shoeboxes, which were especially appreciated by their recipients. Our founder Steph quickly realized that her modest little "Project" was desperately needed, and a national movement was officially born.
A Shoebox gift is a powerful reminder for a woman that she has not been forgotten that she has support, people who care about her, and that she remains a valued and respected member of her community.
For those giving gifts, The Merch Project is a tangible and creative opportunity to give back directly to someone in your very own community. It’s a small, simple gesture of kindness that has an immediate, positive impact on the woman who receives it.