Six charity shops in Suffolk will be taken over by college students in an effort to increase their takings.

Level three business and retail learners studying at West Suffolk College will occupy the shops from February 26 to March 2, using their business, visual merchandising and social media skills to encourage more people to visit.

The teams have already scoped out their stores and made plans for the shop-floor layout and window displays.

The students will be working in local branches of EACH, Suffolk Age UK, St Nicholas Hospice Care, Barnado’s, Cancer Research UK and the Salvation Army during the project, and will compete amongst themselves to see which of the six groups raises the most for their shop.

“We may be a charity shop, but we work just the same as mainstream retail to achieve targets and budgets,” said Bev Pepper, store manager of Barnardo’s in St Johns Street. “This will give the students an eye opener to how we work to raise money for our amazing children’s’ services and beyond.”

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