Partnering to bring carpets and hope to those in need
We are excited to be piloting a new venture in partnership with Mercado carpet suppliers to provide carpets and flooring to those who need it most.
Mercado are based in the north of England, and approached us after seeing Acts 435 mentioned in a BBC news article where one of our recipients spoke about the policy to remove carpet and flooring after a tenant leaves a social housing property. This policy leaves bare floors for those moving into the property, and often they cannot afford to replace the carpet or flooring.
John Clark, General Manager at Mercado, took a look at our website and saw other requests for carpet. Moved by one particular request he made contact with us to see if they could donate carpet to help. This led to a conversation about what more they could do.
Currently carpet that is surplus to requirements ends up in landfill because there is no effective way to recycle carpet. Yet many people cannot afford new carpet, and could only dream of the kind of high quality carpet Mercado had available. It felt like Acts 435's unique way of connecting those who want to help with those who are in need could make this a reality.
Mercado offered to supply the carpet and flooring and in addition supply underlay, grippers and door plates that are essential to fit them. Good underlay makes such a difference to providing good insulation so this was a particularly generous offer.
Acts 435 connects Mercado with those in need, using our network of Advocates based in local churches and charities. Previously, Advocates had needed to raise money for both the carpet and fitting fee, which often led to a very cheap, poor quality carpet. Through this project, it is now possible to fully carpet the beneficiary's home with excellent quality carpet, and Advocates only need to use one Acts 435 request to raise the funds for the fitting fee.
We launched a trial of the project in July 2023, focussing on the areas of West Yorkshire and Greater Manchester. Those Partners who have been included in the trial have been so thankful to be able to supply flooring to those in their communities who are desperate to cover their bare floors.
One of these partners is Noah's Ark Centre in Halifax (see picture of Andrew and Kelly, left, and Katie and Rhona from Acts 435) who have been so thankful to be able to support individuals with flooring for free. They work with a local carpet fitter and sourced a small storage unit to store the carpet.
Andrew, the manager at Noah's Ark said: "Since we first found out about the new project with Mercado, my colleague, Kelly, and I have been eagerly awaiting the start of it. We know how valuable this project will be to the client group we work with. It is a literal game changer and will make a huge difference to their lives."
Kelly was working with a young woman who’d been almost 12 months without any floor coverings. Five months ago she attempted suicide (luckily the rope she used snapped) and she was hospitalised for 16 weeks. She told Kelly that she felt she was just existing; with no carpets, no washing machine, no oven.
The excitement and gratitude from this young woman when Kelly told her about the Mercado project was palpable. After her meeting she sent Kelly a heartfelt email thanking her.
Kelly and I are so grateful to Acts 435 and Mercado for being given the opportunity to be part of something so valuable and potentially life changing. Thank you to all at Acts 435 for making this happen."