Bins and Recycling

Uniform Exchange

A new uniform exchange scheme is helping families across Mid and East Antrim cut the cost of going back to school.

The area’s Community Planning Partnership has teamed up with Mid and East Antrim Community Advice Services (MEACAS) to help provide parents with good quality, clean and pre-worn school uniforms.

There are drop-off points across Ballymena, Larne and Carrickfergus for people to donate any uniform items that they no longer need for nursery, primary, secondary and grammar schools.

It’s all completely confidential, simply bring along the uniform items you no longer use and swap them for those that you need.

Nothing to swap? Don’t worry come along and volunteers can help you out.

Uniform Exchange Pop Up Shops

The shops will be in Mid and East Antrim Community Advice Services (MEACAS) offices as follows:

  • Ballymena – Wellington Court (Can be accessed from Wellington Street or Church Street)
  • Carrickfergus – Antrim Street (Office is within the car park of Carrickfergus Town Hall)
  • Larne – Station Road (Office is located within the Larne Market Yard)

There is no qualifying criteria or referral process.  People can go along and swap items or if they have nothing to swap, they can pick up anything that they need (Subject to availability).  Beneficiaries will be asked to complete a very short questionnaire which will be anonymous.  This will allow us to measure impact.

It can cost families up to £250 per child to buy school uniform ready for the new academic year. With household budgets being squeezed more and more, kitting a child out for school can be a real stress for families. It can often be make or break for the households of the 30k schoolchildren across Mid and East Antrim.

Lots of uniform, often in good condition, is thrown away with each household binning more than 25kg of textiles a year. Aside from the environmental impact, this is also a waste of perfectly good clothing which could be used elsewhere, so what better way to make use of it than help families who need it.

The swap shops are accepting all good quality garments including trousers, coats, skirts, cardigans, blazers, shoes, jackets, trainers, jumpers, sports kits, polo-shirts and dresses.

There are drop-off points throughout the borough or for larger collections arrangements can be made for the items to be collected directly.

Drop-off points for all pre-loved uniforms will be held at each of the below locations:

Ballymena Carrickfergus Larne
  • Ballymena Credit Union
  • Slemish n tha Braid Credit Union
  • MEACAS Office – Wellington Court
  • Seven Towers Leisure Centre
  • Ardeevin and The Braid
  • MEACAS Office – Antrim Street
  • Oakfield Community Centre
  • Sunnylands Community Centre
  • Carrickfergus Amphitheatre
  • Carrick Town Hall
  • MEACAS Office – Station Road
  • Larne Leisure Centre
  • Smiley Buildings
  • Islandmagee Community Centre

Any large collections please contact T: 028 9600 1333 for pick up.