BT Ireland survey reveals the nation's love of de-cluttering, yet wardrobes remain full of under-used or never worn clothes.

Sept 27th 2016

Irish Rugby captain Rory Best helps kick off BT Shop for Change. Over 110 BT employees to take over Irish Cancer Society shops on October 13

49% of people surveyed in Ireland wear just half of the clothes in their wardrobe on a regular basis, 28% wear just a quarter regularly, while 25% have six or more items in their wardrobe that they have never worn once, according to a survey* commissioned by communications company BT Ireland to launch BT Shop for Change in aid of the Irish Cancer Society.

However, in today’s circular economy, the survey revealed that the nation still loves the catharsis of a good clear-out. 60% de-clutter at least twice a year, while 89% claim a clear-out makes them feel either good or brilliant. Charity shops are benefiting, with 80% of people donating their unwanted items to charity. However, only 8% shop once per month or more in charity shops, with clothes and books the most popular items to purchase.

On October 13, over 110 BT employees will take over nine Irish Cancer Society charity shops in Dublin, Galway and Cork as part of BT Shop for Change, using their time and talents to fill the shops with high-quality stock; attract customers; and raise crucial funds for cancer research and care. Simultaneously, BT colleagues in Northern Ireland will take over Marie Curie shops as part of the all-island campaign, which has raised in excess of €300,000 for Irish Cancer Society and Marie Curie NI over the last five years.
Rory Best, Ireland rugby captain and BT Shop for Change ambassador said:

Unfortunately, many of us know loved ones that have been touched by cancer. The Irish Cancer Society provides care and support to those affected by cancer and their friends and family. We’ve all got clothes that sit unworn year after year or unwanted items lying about the house that others could enjoy. BT Shop for Change is the perfect excuse to gather everything up and donate it to Irish Cancer Society who can sell it to raise vital funds for the work that they do." 

The money raised will help the Society fund innovative cancer research projects and provide support for patients and their families. Just €60 provides one-to-one consultations for three people affected by cancer on the Society’s Freephone Cancer Nurseline, 1800 200 700, while €350 covers the cost of one night of Night Nursing for a seriously ill cancer patient, allowing them to be cared for in the comfort of their own home, surrounded by loved ones.

Mark Hopkins, Director of Sales, BT Ireland said:

We are proud to launch BT Shop for Change for the fifth year, and to give our employees and their local communities the opportunity to contribute to the vital work of the Irish Cancer Society. One in three people in Ireland will develop cancer in their lifetime. By donating your preloved clothes and accessories, and picking up a bargain at your local store on October 13, you can help us deliver real change for local people suffering from cancer.”

Paul Hughes, Irish Cancer Society Shops Manager said, “We are looking forward to welcoming BT employees back onto the shop floor for BT Shop for Change. Almost 40,000 people in Ireland are diagnosed with cancer each year. Money raised through our charity shops is crucial to helping us fund vital cancer research and provide free support and information to cancer patients and their families. The teams from BT do a fantastic job each year of collecting quality stock for our customers, so I’m encouraging members of the public to drop into one of our participating stores and ‘Shop for Change’.”

To support the campaign, the public are invited to donate their unwanted clothes, accessories, books, homeware and bric-a-brac to a participating Irish Cancer Society store, and to drop back on October 13 to pick up a range of specially donated items, exclusive to BT Shop for Change.

For more information on the campaign and participating stores, visit or follow #BTShopforChange on Twitter.