In March 1998, CWD was looking for new ways to generate an income and decided to start a second hand bookshop. They were looking for someone to set it up and Nicky was chosen as ‘the one’. She was quite apprehensive as she’d never done anything like this before so off she went to Cape Town Library and found a book a very dusty bottom shelf on ‘how to set up a second hand bookshop’ which funnily enough hadn’t been borrowed for 10 years!
Nicky followed the guidance in the book to the letter and, with the help and assistance with the pricing of the books, installation of shop fittings, and a band of 12 volunteers the door opened in July 1998. The bookshop went from strength to strength and grew to include the second floor!
In 2006, decision was made to become independent of CWD and Help The Rural Child Trust was formed to support rural children through the Goedgedacht Trust. By 2007, a second shop had opened. This time a clothing and bric-a-brac shop on the ground floor of the Mowbray Bookshop and, this too, become a success.
Help The Rural Charity Shops have gone from strength to strength and at present we have seven retail shops, a mobile bookshop and an online children’s bookshop. With the love and support of the public we can continue with this well-loved initiative.
Vision and mission
To make a sustainable contribution towards improving the lives of vulnerable rural children.
To raise funds for the Goedgedacht Trust in support of their programmes that help to strengthen and support rural children who are living in distressed and impoverished conditions.
Knowledge – of what we are working towards, our goal and purpose
Creativity – that expresses itself in developing a creative eye for displaying and organising merchandise in the outlets and in thinking about how to draw customers to the outlets.
Flexibility – that can be described as the ability to ‘think on your feet’ or ‘going the extra mile’
Initiative – taking initiative acknowledging the accountability structures and systems of Help The Rural Child
Teamwork – at each department and between departments
Sense of humour – the saving grace
An appreciation of others – expressed in relationship skills such as creating a welcoming environment; openness to diversity; enthusiasm and being articulate
Never say no – as first response and only after careful consideration and assessment