Staying First

Staying First logo

Service name: Furnish

Service description

We fund Staying First to run Furnish, a furniture and appliance re-use enterprise.

Furnish allows local residents and organisations to access re-use and recycled items and offers generous discounts for low-income and disadvantaged households through its W12 centre store in Shepherds Bush. It collects unwanted furniture from homes as well as commercial and public sector organisations. By re-using furniture, Furnish reduces the need for landfill.

Selling reused and recycled furniture and other vintage and retro items gives them an income to run some of their other services, such as their debt and welfare advice for people experiencing hardship. For more information on this please visit their website.

Furnish also provides volunteering opportunities and associated CV improvement for borough residents over a wide range of skills, from retail assistants to vehicle and warehouse work.

Funded until:

31 March 2021  

Annual funding level:


Performance April 2015 to March 2016

Number of residents supported                     
Target: 8,500              
Actual: 10,305

Volunteer hours delivered
Number of volunteers involved: 24
Number of volunteer hours delivered: 1,220
Value of volunteer hours provided: £11,468

Outcomes being achieved

  • carried out 1,201 collections and 660 deliveries of re-use furniture in the borough
  • provided low-cost recycled furniture at its W12 store and offered further discounts to those borough residents eligible for a discount to a total saving for these residents of £68,911
  • 74 tonnes of potential re-use product was collected and saved from landfill
  • opportunities for local residents to volunteer and help run Furnish services.

Comments, achievements and future plans for the service

Furnish recently introduced an eBay furniture shop.

Furnish offers volunteering and employment opportunities, in addition to taking on those participating in community service or are in the probation system. In the past year, the scale of Furnish’s operations has increased dramatically through the delivery of the Social Fund.

In 2012, SBHG commissioned a Social Return on Investment report. This identified £2,195,918 in social, environmental and economic value.

The figures have been updated for 2014-15 in line with growth estimates. These outcomes are collectively valued at £2,861,724 in direct value and £477,816 in enabled value with total responses expended of £2,747,744.

The outcomes achieved by Furnish in 2014-15 are collectively valued at £3,339,540.12.

2014-15 outcomes achieved by Furnish
Outcome Enabled or Direct Value type Value amount
Government savings: social care, health, reduced JSA and criminal justice system Enabled Fiscal £394,871
Government savings: Furnish as cheaper supplier and landfill savings Direct Fiscal £326,236
Social landlords: sustained tenancy and maintenance savings Enabled Economic £82,944
Other collection clients' savings: Furnish as cheaper supplier (for example offices) Direct Economic £50,328
Customer savings from shop Direct Economic £68,911
Customers' wellbeing Direct Social £1,033,392
Childrens' wellbeing Direct Social £105,456
Customers' sustained tenure at home Direct Social £1,222,426
CO2 value: landfill and new manufacture Direct Other - environmental £16,398
Gigajoules value: new manufacture Direct Other - environmental £4,340
Staff economic benefit Direct Economic £0
Staff wellbeing benefit Direct Social £27,024
Volunteers wellbeing benefit Direct Social £7,213

Help them to continue to make an impact

  • donate unwanted furniture – a small collection fee is charged to cover costs including unwanted mattresses
  • volunteer in their Greenford warehouse or at their shop in the west 12 shopping Centre in Shepherds Bush – ranging from administration, upcycling to retail and beyond.
  • visit the shop there they have a huge range of products from the basic and practical to the quirky one-offs, bric-a-brac and many stylish vintage pieces.

For further information on this and other services please contact them on 020 8749 4031 or 020 8996 8920, email

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