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volunteers (far left and right), Daniella Finch (PR Manager at Dunelm, centre left) and Alex Marlowe (Welfare and Diversity Executive Officer for LSU 2020/21, centre right)

Dunelm continues work with Loughborough University to provide care leavers with starter packs for campus life

The homeware company has committed to providing students who are care leavers with items to help them settle into their new home for a second year.

These packs include bedding, cutlery, a Dunelm voucher and other necessities, similar to the packs they provided last year.

Kim Emenike, a care leaver who graduated this year from Loughborough praised the initiative in the video below. She said that if the packs had been around when she started university, she would not have felt so stressed about working long hours at her part time job to finance all the items she needed to get. She added: “It ensures care leavers have the right and basic essentials to start university.”

Rachel Third, Head of Philanthropy at Loughborough University added: “I want to thank Dunelm for their incredible support. Moving to university can be daunting for all students, but especially care leavers and never more so than this year with the added anxiety about Covid-19.

“Most care leavers will be coming to campus without the same level of family support as their peers and the financial burden they face is often much greater. Dunelm’s generous provision of welcome packs will meet practical needs and help them feel at home, but just as important is the message it sends to these students. These packs say ‘You are valued and we welcome you to your new home in the Loughborough family. We are here from day one to support you – you’re not on this journey alone.’”

Veronica Moore, Loughborough’s Head of Student Wellbeing and Inclusivity said: “I’d like to thank Dunelm. I’m delighted that they are gifting starter packs to students who are leaving care or are estranged from parents for a second year.

2020 has seen unprecedented economic challenges and opportunities for students to perhaps find casual work to supplement their income is greatly reduced so these starter packs will be particularly helpful.”

Care leavers interested in joining Loughborough can apply for bursaries and access a range of support packages. Further information on this can be found here.