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Annual Report

Annual Report

SHOPMOBILITY, ST HELIER

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Chairman’s Annual Report for 2014

We opened 9 years ago last March so this year we were operational for our 10th summer and have
become one of the leading suppliers of information to disabled people, particularly tourists, in the
Island. With one full time employee, one for 12 hours a week and a very few volunteers this is an
achievement of which we can be justly proud.
In 2005 we purchased 10 electric vehicles and 6 manual chairs and made provision for a few more.
We now have 103 powered scooters and chairs with 84 manual chairs. We have also added a range
of other equipment such as tri- and quad- walkers, Zimmer frames, shower stools, perch chairs, an
oxygen cylinder holder, wall grabs and many other little items requested at all hours of the day and
night by “forgetful” tourists but used extensively by islanders as well.

Our records show nearly 6,500 people have been helped over the last 9 years with equipment. We
still have a number of islanders who joined our scheme in the early stages using our services and
some tourists who came in 2005 still ring us with their holiday plans and ask for a scooter or chair to
be delivered to the hotel at which they are staying. Some have become friends and pop in to see us
during their visits.

Purchases
This year we bought 3 more scooters suitable for cars and these have been well used. We now have
a total of 9 and at times have struggled to meet demand. As we are only busy with tourists during the
summer months we have to think carefully about numbers as the batteries need to be changed every
year at a cost of about £150 which we hope to reclaim through the hire charges. Each of these
scooters needs to be well used to cover just the battery and insurance costs so to have some
normally idle does not make economic sense.

We also purchased a 3 wheel scooter to replace one of the originals which has been well used and
was not in a condition to be retained and in August we had a run on large wheel manual chairs and
have bought 6 more which will hopefully satisfy demand next year particularly around Battle of
Flowers time.

Occupational Therapy and Shopmobility Rental Scheme
Occupational Therapy asked us if we knew how those on limited finances could have access to a
scooter at home. The idea is to enable people not sufficiently immobile to need an expensive power
chair but who need some help to allow them to get out and thus inprove their quality of life and indeed
to remain at home. OT supply expensive power chairs to the most disabled but not scooters. We
offered to provide scooters on the basis of reclaiming from the users the cost of batteries, insurance
and maintenance (not the capital cost). At the time of writing a total of 14 have used our scheme,
however one has passed on and one found that the ramp to her home was too difficult for her to
negotiate. OT estimate that there will be significant rising demand with perhaps an additional 12
people a year opting for this scheme in the early stages. So far we have used the scooters bought
from the 2012 Olympic Games but with only 4 remaining we will probably have to purchase many
more to meet this rising demand and our expanded social purpose. Our funds will not support this
expenditure and we will have to for the first time apply to funding bodies to assist. We are waiting for
a quotation for an initial 6 scooters which hopefully will be less costly as we are “buying in bulk”. The
Scheme assists the States with their policy of keeping people in their own homes for as long as
possible thus saving island taxpayers money.

Sand Street parking trial
The trial started in November 2012 using unicards. This extinguishes the £40 fine for exceeding 3
hours and replaces it with increasing charges for each hour over 3. It seems to have been successful
other than on Saturdays when the TTS office is not open and non Shopmobility people with blue
badges (normally tourists) cannot register. We try to help by taking the car number and advising TTS
but it is not satisfactory as not all ask us. In the UK where there are charges for parking it is normal
for those with a blue badge to pay and many of the tourists from there are surprised that can park free
here.

We have now also purchased a card reader from Pay Pal which incur charges of 3.5% on
transactions so for those who wish to use a card we will be adding this to our charges as the charity
cannot afford to lose this for the convenience of the payer.

Finances
As can be seen from the attached accounts our income was generally similar to last year with a
surplus of under £1,500 on chair hire but about three times that taking into account other income
which included a legacy of £1,000 and the profit on the sales of small items such as stick holders,
post cards, walking sticks etc.

We last raised our charges in 2010 after our first 5 years but intend to retain them at the same level
for the 2015 season in spite of inflation.

We don’t receive any funds from the States, however we do have our premises in the Sand Street
car park and a store in Pier Road provided for us for which we thank them.

Charity law
The States has approved the introduction of a law concerning charities which was subject to
considerable consultation in which we took part. Up to now there has been no law regarding charities
in Jersey. The new law will be introduced in 2 stages with a single registrar who will, over a period,
examine all those who claim to be charities to ensure that they are there for public benefit and have a
written constitution. After the law comes into force it will be illegal for the word Charity or Charitable to be
used other than for registered Jersey charities and recognised ones from the UK and elsewhere.

In Jersey charities are exempt from all taxes including GST so it is essential that the public can be
reassured that their money is being properly used for the benefit of Jersey residents. Although a
number of organisations might fail to qualify we welcome this new law which will also help those who
are granted money via the Charities Aid Foundation in the UK which asks for a registered number
which we currently don’t have in Jersey beyond the Association of Jersey Charities number which
does not have “legal standing”.

Jersey Disability Partnership
During the last year the Jersey Disability Partnership was formed. This now has a membership of
about 150 individuals and organisations and has direct access to the Chief Minister’s Office. It is
through this Group that agreement has been reached with the States for significant disablity research
to be conducted over the next few months which eventually will inform a Disability Strategy and
balanced Equality and Disability Legislation. It might also lead to a Disabilities Officer being
appointed. Guernsey currently has a strategy but it is just starting the process of implemention
whereas Jersey currently doesn’t have a strategy but does offer a much more extensive range of
services to those provided in our sister Island.

Durrell
We keep between 9 and 13 scooters at Durrell for use by their disabled visitors. Over 600 people
have used the scooters there during the last year. Maintenance costs here are high as we need to
replace the tyres much more often as these are frequently damaged due to people “jumping” the
verges rather than looking for level access. September was the busiest month since we first put
scooters at Durrell with over 130 people using the scooters and chairs.

National Federation of Shopmobility
The trustees of the National Federation of Shopmobility decided last year that with the retirement of
the Executive Secretary there should be a review of its operation and whether in its present format it
was contributing to Schemes. The decision was to investigate other bodies into which it could be
integrated and still retain a web directory and public telephone number for assistance. 5
organisations were consulted and the decision was made to move it to the British Healthcare Traders
Association with effect from the 1st November, 2014. The transfer should not have any effect on
individual Schemes and perhaps increase the number more quickly as the BHTA has many more staff
than the NFSUK has. Your chairman will cease to hold that office with the NFSUK on its transfer.

Staff
We still have Keith managing the facility assisted by Paul and they cope well with the summer rush
and those forgettful tourists who use equipment at home and then suddenly remember when they
arrive at their hotel that they need a scooter “immediately”. Most times we can oblige.
David Bull takes manual equipement to the east and Stephen de Gruchy to the west. Sue Monks
comes in most Wednesdays. David Gardiner delivers in Town when we are stretched. Pam (my wife)helps me when I need to be collected or to deal with manual equipment when others are not
available. Jim Hopley does the accounts. Other than Keith and Paul all are volunteers and I offer my
grateful thanks to all.

Christmas Lottery and easyfundraising.org.uk
We will be selling Christmas Lottery tickets again this year. The first prize is guaranteed to be
£300,000 but if previous years are a guide it will be nearer to £1M. Each ticket is £2. If you buy them
from us Shopmobility receives the commission which is helpful to our finances. There is a tear off
portion at the bottom of the last page of this report which you can use if you wish to purchase from us.
We are also registered with easyfundraising.co.uk and you can donate if you purchase from a
considerable number of companies on line. It cost you nothing but we gain.

General
It has been pointed out to us that there is currently no place for advice to disabled people of a general
nature beyond the developing Jersey On-Line Directory (not accessible to all). Due to the questions
we have been asked over the years we have built up considerable knowledge and we are to have
discussions with the Consumer Council regarding us becoming an “enquiry desk” for disability
information.

Sponsors
We are grateful to our sponsors during the past year for their help and assistance. Please use them if
appropriate.

The Channel Islands Co-operative Society The Rotary Club de la Manche 
Parish of St Helier The Fox Group of Companies
Guardian Medical Technicare
Moore Stephens Feelunique@AuCaprice
The Supplement Store, Fort Regent K & C Crown & Anchor
Barnes Publishing FerrySpeed 
Profreight  

You can donate by copying the section below and sending a cheque to Shopmobility, Sand Street, St 

Helier, JE2 3QF or using PayPal payable to Shopmobility, St Helier.


Name, please print:

Address:

 

I enclose a cheque in the sum of £.......... payable to SSHJ for lottery tickets

Or if you choose

I enclose a cheque in the sum of £......... payable to SSHJ as a donation.

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