Charity shop forced to spend £3,000 on CCTV to keep thieves at bay

Maggie Lenahan, manager of Bosies breast cancer charity shop

A charity has had to install a CCTV system to deter thieves from stealing donations from outside its shop.

Bosies boss Maggie Lenahan has hit out at those who keep taking items which are left outside.

The charity, based in Justice Street in the city centre, was set up by Maggie and her daughter Debbie Hamilton, and raises money for Aberdeen Royal Infirmary’s breast cancer research clinic.

The charity had to spend £3,000 installing CCTV cameras to deter thieves and put up a sign warning people not to leave donations outside.

Maggie said since the charity was family run it felt personal that donations kept being stolen.

A breast cancer survivor herself, she said: “It is very frustrating that people keep stealing donations from outside the shop.

“It has been happening for as long as I can remember and it does hurt that they keep getting taken away from us as it is money that could be helping people in Aberdeen who are touched by breast cancer.

“I would say that at least 90% of donations that are left outside our charity shop are either stolen or rifled through.

“I couldn’t even begin to estimate how much money the charity has lost out on over the years but I think it would be fair to say thousands.”

Bosies is currently fundraising to connect its current shop to recently purchased new premises nearby.

Maggie added they relied heavily on good neighbours to let them know if they have seen anyone going through donations left outside.

She said: “What we find now is people, if they see we are closed, will put the donations over the gate.

“This has led to people seeing the donations and going through them.

“We check our cameras when we see that someone has gone through the donations outside.

“We had one incident where a man had put his hands through our gates and was going through the donations of T-shirts.

“He was actually trying them on outside in broad daylight before leaving with a handful of clothes.”

She advised anyone wishing to hand in donations to do so while the shop is open.

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