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Scottish Charity Register No. SC043760

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Homeless boutique

May 18 2009
Profits from the new Novas shop in Camden will provide housing support, education and training to disadvantaged individuals in the UK The Rough Sleepers store on Chalk Farm Road in Camden may look like another uber-trendy expensive emporium for tiny T-shirts and stylishly stained jeans, but it is hoping to do much more than sell clothes. All profits from the clothing and accessories sold will go to the founding organisation, the national housing group Novas. The Novas Group provides community-based housing support, education and training, employment and artistic opportunities to disadvantaged individuals in the UK. Their focus is on alternative and innovative means of development for people who have experienced social exclusion. Rough Sleepers recruits young international designers to create exclusive collections which are then sold in the shop. All profits are reinvested into the Novas Group, who are currently striving to refurbish of Arlington House in nearby Camden. Paul Everitt, head of artistic programmes for Novas, said: "The Novas Group?î???s aim for the store is to raise the profile of the issues facing homeless, ex-homeless and excluded people, and to explore positive ways of dealing with some of those issues." He added: "The store will provide opportunities for training and work in a high quality retail environment, giving people experience and skills that are transferable to other environments." Behind the shop is a small studio where designers are asked to provide further training opportunities in production in all areas of the fashion industry. Mr Everitt said he hopes this will give people the opportunity to work and train alongside fashion professionals. The store's interior was designed by Japanese artist Sonoko Obuchi, who has used the idea of a shopping trolley, an item synonymous with both consumers and those forced to push their belongings around in abandoned shoppingcarts. Clothes are suspended from a gigantic steel frame that fills the first tier of the shop. Rough Sleepers is open now at 43 Chalk Farm Road, Camden. For more details on training, contact Paul Everitt via the Novas website or by email.
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