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Social enterprise opens pop-up shop at Meadowhall for the festive season

Sheffield non-profit Printed By us has been hard-hit by the pandemic, but there’s a glimmer of hope after Meadowhall gifted them a pop-up space. 

Printed by us store front final

Printed By us collaborates with local artists to produce designs that help get rough sleepers back into employment. The organisation is part of the wider Cathedral Archer Project which helps homeless people improve their quality of life by providing resources including one-to-one support from project workers, access to accommodation, food and laundry services, as well as structured volunteer programmes.

Printed By us works with the volunteer programmes and runs workshops that introduce homeless and vulnerable people to screen printing through a therapeutic approach. They usually operate stalls featuring their work at community markets like Sharrow Vale and Nether Edge. Prints are signed by both the artist and the screen printer and 100% of profits go back into funding for the organisation.

Meadowhall safety signs

Covid-19 has put an indefinite halt to community markets, leaving Printed By us in a tough spot. The opportunity for a holiday pop-up shop arose when British Land, who runs Meadowhall, gave them a space rent-free in the shopping centre. Daniela Orrego, Printed By us’ Social Franchise and Sales Manager, said: “This is the first time we’ve ever had a physical store and it’s been a bit overwhelming and exciting at the same time.”

In the face of tier restrictions and the ongoing pandemic, holiday shopping has changed. Customers at Meadowhall face long queues and carefully monitored traffic. Shoppers Sian and Sonja Rowbotham said they were surprised by the amount of traffic at the mall: “We wouldn’t have come out. We were expecting five minute queues, not waiting like this.”

Alongside staggering traffic into the shopping centre, Meadowhall has also increased health and safety measures inside. Meadowhall’s Customer Service Advisor, Careline, cited hand-sanitising stations, ‘keep left’ systems, and intensive cleaning routines as part of their efforts to keep visitors safe.

Despite the obstacles of the year, the organisation and its supporters remain hopeful for their future. Illustrator Jack Martindale who has worked with the organisation’s marketing team described Printed By us’ work as ‘rather amazing’.“

Daniela orrego printed by us popup

It’s a nice way to give someone’s life value when they might not feel any, it could be the spark that motivates them to make a change in their future,” Martindale said.

As the holiday season progresses, Orrego is optimistic: “It’s been a challenge, but we hope as time goes by it will pick up a little more.”

Printed By us’ pop-up shop is open to visit at Meadowhall through January.

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