Emma on top of a mountain

During these challenging times, our retail colleagues have come together to raise vital funds for the Retail Trust. The funds raised continue to push us towards our #forthefour target, enabling us to support the emotional, physical, vocational, and financial wellness of those in retail and the supporting service industries, and their families.

One of the dedicated individuals who has been a key supporter of the #forthefour appeal is Heather, Store Manager at TJX Europe. Heather started her fundraising journey on 8 June 2020 with the aim to hit 217,000 steps in one week and raise £250 for the Retail Trust.

Emma's record of her walk

We caught up with Heather to find out about the impact of COVID-19 and why she chose to support CaRe20.

Has your role changed during the COVID-19 crisis, and if so how? 

My role hasn’t changed significantly apart from being furloughed and not being able to do any work at all. I now need to be even more supportive towards my team and keep in touch checking in on their wellbeing. 

What impact has this had on your life?  

Not being able to work has mostly had an impact on my health and wellbeing. I miss my team and store a lot - so I’m not getting to socialise. I am so used to being busy and organising everyone’s day it’s really strange not doing that - so I’m not as active. I’ve had ups and downs which I’m sure everyone has.

Is there anything you would like to say to someone in a similar situation to you?  

Try and stay positive we are all very blessed to be heading back to work once lockdown is lifted. I am so grateful to be in a position where I haven’t lost my job during the pandemic. 

Can you tell us about a positive experience you’ve had while working through the crisis?  

Seeing my team come together and demonstrate random acts of kindness to each other. They’ve all bonded more and special friendships have been made. I’ve also really enjoyed working on home improvements and now have a beautiful garden to relax in.

Can you tell us why you chose the Retail Trust and the #forthefour campaign as the charity you wanted to support?

I chose the Retail Trust for a couple of reasons:

1. We are always supporting each other at work but sometimes we need other help, the Retail Trust do so much for the people in this industry it really does go under the radar unless you work in retail, so I wanted to shine a small light on that if I could. 

2. I lost my brother suddenly in 2010, he was only 33. Six months after his death I asked for bereavement counselling through the NHS but they told me I would have to wait three months. I straight away rang the Retail Trust and they had a counsellor assigned to me within two weeks and I received free sessions. I always recommend the Retail Trust to my team when going through tough times.

Heather has displayed outstanding efforts to support retail employees and their families. the Retail Trust, RWRC (the home of Retail Week and World Retail Congress), and the BRC are grateful for the support Heather and the industry have shown to the campaign.

Support #forthefour today to help the UK’s retail workers during the COVID-19 pandemic

Retailers can help fund the appeal by contacting Claire Greenwood our Head of Funding.

Individuals can donate to the #forthefour appeal here.

Pledge your support today