New-U Enterprises Ltd - Our proposal to you

New-U Enterprises - Our Proposal to You

What do we do

We offer individualised work experience placements in a flexible and supportive environment, to long term unemployed young people to help them progress towards work, training or volunteering. We do this in our clothes and accessories swap shop in Castle Mall, Norwich

  • We have helped 36 young people to better their lives so far in 2019 and aim to support at least a further 50 by December 2020;
  • In 7 months customers have swapped 25,000 items of quality clothing & accessories;
  • 44 people have used our Smart Clothes Loan scheme so far this year
  • Swap tokens are regularly gifted to families and individuals in need of clothing
  • Our ask to you
  • We need funding to continue as we are ‘not for profit ‘ (soon to be a registered Charity);
  • We are looking for sponsors to fund a young person’s journey towards work;
  • Our base cost for each work placement is £1,500;
  • We are always open to fundraising suggestions, if you can help in any way.

More about us

1) Our primary aim is to offer individualised work experience placements to long term unemployed young people, supporting them to move towards work, training or volunteering. We help build their confidence, self-belief and transferable skills. We support young people to realise their full potential and recognise their capabilities to meet challenges and overcome obstacles to progression. This includes onwards mentoring where needed. To date 88% have reported a positive outcome with 66% moving into work or apprenticeships.

2) Work placements take place in New-U, a clothes and accessories swap shop on level 2, Castle Mall, Norwich. New-U is an alternative way of shopping, offering an easy avenue for the wider community to contribute towards reducing the harmful effect of the textiles industry. In 7 months 25,000 items of clothing have been swapped, this equates to a saving of 4.5 billion litres of water and 3 million kilos of CO2 on the equivalent newly manufactured items.

3) We offer a free unconditional smart clothes loan scheme to anyone requiring clothing for any occasion. Items can be kept or returned. 44 outfits have been loaned.

4) New-U is inclusive and open to all in the community. Complimentary swap points are gifted to those in need of clothing.

5) We run workshops with schools and further education colleges stressing the importance of re-using textiles and the alternatives to buying new.

Case Studies

Luke had a troubled childhood, he had a series of tragic personal events and has always been in care. His difficulties include ADHD and epilepsy. Unlike many of our young people Luke did not lack confidence and was willing to try anything from day one. His enthusiasm and boundless energy shone through, especially when appreciation was shown for the work he’d done. The things many of us take for granted were what Luke needed to progress towards work; he needed to feel trusted, to be given responsibility and to feel a valued member of the team. Luke has never worked and has few qualifications so the transferable skills he can now evidence and the reference New-U has provided will make all the difference to him when applying for jobs.

Customer feedback: “My mum and I regularly use your shop and I wanted to say how impressed we were with the young man who was working behind the till today. Although we could tell he was nervous, he came across as confident, really polite and made our visit really lovely”

Before Harley started his work placement, he was socially isolated, having spent the best part of 5 years in his bedroom. Working hours and tasks were flexible and initially his preference was to be behind the scenes in the stockroom. Despite still suffering with anxiety, Harley has developed strategies to overcome this whilst in the shop. He has progressed towards independence and employment and recognises the positive difference this opportunity has made to his life.

Home life was difficult for Jenny after she lost her father and her sister was admitted to hospital. She wanted to work but didn’t feel ready to cope with the pressures this might bring. We were able to offer her a placement where, when she needed a break or to talk, she felt able to ask for help. In the beginning Jenny was extremely low and overwhelmed by the simplest task. We soon discovered Jenny was great with customers and a quick learner, and eventually she believed this herself too. We allowed her to progress at her own pace and gave the encouragement that she needed to begin to confidently apply for jobs. We recommended her for The Prince’s Trust Get Into Retail course and as a result of this and the time spent with New-U Jenny successfully applied for a retail job in Norwich. We are so proud to see Jenny now living independently, working full time and enjoying life once more.

Gentle reassurance in a supportive and encouraging environment helped Poppy progress towards her career goal. Poppy had a loving and happy childhood but had experienced a series of personal challenges between the ages of 16-19 which left her with no self-confidence and she felt she would never be ‘good enough’ to be offered a job. Poppy’s hours were set around public transport and she began with short days and the reassurance that she could take a break at any time if she felt overwhelmed or extremely anxious. Within a short time weeks Poppy was a changed person as she realised she was better than ‘good enough’ at many things, especially customer service. Poppy is now working full time as an administrator.

To find out more, pop in or call

Sue Buffin

Strategic Director / New-U Enterprises Ltd / 75 Castle Mall / Norwich NR1 3DD / Tel: 07733 190728 @thenorwichswapshop @thenorwichswapshop1


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