IHC volunteers Sandi Spink and Jill Knowles were distraught over the theft of their shop’s delivery van. Photo: Jonty Dine.

‘Low life’ theft at IHC charity shop

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Locals living with intellectual disabilities who were hoping for a new wardrobe will have to wait a little longer after a “low life” theft at the Nelson IHC Charity Shop.

The shop’s delivery van, which was full of donated clothing, was broken into and stolen in the early hours of Wednesday morning last week.

Police recovered the van and arrested two suspects at 4am in Richmond.

Store manager Gill Burson says it was a pretty low thing to do.

“It’s pretty sad when you have people who feel entitled to rob people with disabilities.”

To clear out for their summer stock, the IHC shop held two days of free clothing giveaways, on the weekend prior.

“It was such a buzz to give back to the community that supports us and the response we got was awesome.”

She says, following the giveaway there were over a hundred garments left which were put into the van to be delivered.

The van also contained crockery that was going to be donated to a couple of struggling families. “You shouldn’t steal from anyone, but when you steal from a charity you just about can’t get lower than that.”

She says the cost of repairing the van is just money that can’t go to the disabled community.

“They broke the window and hot-wired the van, so it has to be repaired which is quite an inconvenience.”

The van will remain in police custody for an unknown period of time.

Gill says she hopes the perpetrators will one day understand the gravity of what they have done.

“They don’t know what is coming in their life, but they may have a child in the future who may unfortunately be born with a disability, and then they will think differently.”

Locals took to social media to condemn the callous crime.

“They have been referred to as low life, the public are pretty upset about it.”

The Nelson IHC shop are seeking donations of quality furniture and clothing for the disabled community. To donate, call 544 4744.