A TEMPORARY school uniform op-shop will be trialled in an effort to reduce some of the financial burden facing Wodonga parents.
Emergency relief agency UnitingCare Wodonga plans to trial the idea in January with the support of four Wodonga state primary schools.
“Back to school time is always an expensive time for families,” chairman Geoff Moar said.
“The schools do what they can but don’t have the facilities to run uniform shops.”
Mr Moar said the start of next year would be even tougher with the education maintenance allowance no longer paid to parents of low-income families under new education funding arrangements in Victoria.
“With the impending repeal of the mining tax, parents may also lose the schoolkids bonus, which has been funded from that tax,” he said.
Mr Moar said the agency already provided food relief and financial assistance to people in real hardship.
“This is a practical way of offering extra assistance,” he said.
The idea will be trialled for three weeks in January and volunteers are needed.
“We are looking for a pool of volunteers who are happy to help out,” Mr Moar said.
“We need volunteers in December before we even open to collect, wash and iron the clothing.”
Wodonga, Wodonga South, Wodonga West and Melrose will help collect uniform items to stock the op-shop.
“If successful, we can extend to others next year,” Mr Moar said.
Profits from the op-shop will support UnitingCare Wodonga.
Volunteers can phone (02) 6024 2108.