Frequently Asked Questions

Why do people in retail need a charity?

The retail sector employs over three million people and it’s the largest private sector employer in the UK – that’s 10% of the workforce. Without this workforce in place to offer the products and services we need in our everyday life - such as food, clothes and transport - the economy would come to a grinding halt. 

While retail offers unparalleled opportunities for people from diverse backgrounds, it has many people on or near the minimum wage, which currently stands at £6.31 for workers aged 21 and over. When something goes wrong, these people can be very vulnerable. Retail Trust has services in place to make sure that we can be there for those who need the support and assistance.

Who does Retail Trust help?

Retail Trust helps people, and their families, who are working in, or retired from, retail and associated businesses, such as sales, manufacturing, wholesale or distribution of retail goods, and include fitting services, security or finance.

What does Retail Trust do?

Through Retail Trust, you can access vital support with a range of services, including a free and confidential Retail Trust Helpline 0808 801 0808, free counselling, free legal and debt advice, hardship grants, a redundancy programme, course funding, an employee assistance programme, and team building opportunities such as Retail Trust Week, as well as retirement housing throughout the UK.

Retail Trust also works in partnership with organisations that are connected to the retail industry to provide an employee assistance programme. 

When is the Helpline open?

The Retail Trust Helpline  0808 801 0808 (UK only, standard network rates apply) is open 24/7. You can also email the Helpline  or text  88010 . Please see our Contact Us page for a complete directory of contact details and to find out how to call from outside the UK. 

When was Retail Trust founded?

Retail Trust started out in 1832 as The Linen and Woollen Drapers, Silk Mercers, Lacemen, Haberdashers and Hosiers’ Institution. The charity was known as the Cottage Homes from the 1920s until it was more recently changed to Retail Trust in 2001.

Who is responsible for the goals of Retail Trust?

The charity is governed by a Board of Trustees and the strategy and day to day operations are run by the Chief Executive Richard Boland and the Executive team comprising of Richard, Clive Warner (Chief Finance Officer) and Joe Kennedy (Head of People Services) and Kathy McIntyre (Head of Cottage Homes). For more information about goals and outcomes, please download the 2012/2013 Impact Report from the Publications page.

How can I help? 

As an individual you can make a one-off donation or you can make regular payments online. If you are a UK taxpayer you can set up Payroll Giving through your employer. Or you can get involved in events like Retail Trust Week or treks and challenges. If you can give Retail Trust your time, there are plenty of volunteering opportunities.

As an organisation, you can make a donation to support Retail Trust’s Employee Assistance Programme, get involved in sponsorship and prizes or set up a Payroll Giving scheme.
For full details on how you can help, please see the Support Us section.

Where does my money go?

Donations will fund the Retail Trust Helpline and the services we provide to people working in retail. Donations of any kind are crucial to the work we do and enable us to continue supporting those in retail who need us. You can make a real difference to people’s lives by donating what you can afford.

Where does Retail Trust get its money from?

Retail Trust is funded by donations from companies supporting the Employee Assistance Programme, through cause related marketing (CRM), funds raised during Retail Trust Week and from corporate fundraising and capital appeals, Our events also generate an income through corporate sponsorship and ticket sales, as do other bespoke events. Personal Giving also generates an income, as does Retirement Housing through rents and service charges. Income is also received from trusts and legacies.

How can I apply for retirement housing?

Retail Trust has five retirement estates in the UK - LondonDerby,LiverpoolSalford and Glasgow – each offering a variety of homes from charming cottages through to modern flats.

You can apply to move to a Retail Trust estate if you’ve worked in retail or business connected to retail for five years or more. Call the Helpline to discuss eligibility criteria and they will send you an application form.

Which companies do you work with?

Retail Trust supports all retailers and those in associated businesses.

What if I have a question that isn’t answered here?

If you have a personal problem or query you can call the Helpline in confidence. Our team of Counsellors are available 24/7 on 0808 801 0808. You can also email the Helpline or text 88010.
For any other questions related to Fundraising, Marketing, or any other services, please see the Contacts page.

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