Press Release by Irish Charity Shops Association

Every year the Irish Charity Shops Association conducts a Benchmarking Survey with its members to quantify how shops benefit the charity sector, and also their impact on the communities where they operate and on the environment.

The results for 2020 show that, even though it was a year like no other, the impact of charity shops was still very significant.

Financial impact

  • €36.5 million sales
  • 7 million garments sold
  • 8 million customers served

These figures are roughly half those of 2019 as charity shops were only trading for 33 weeks.

Social impact

  • €42 million social impact
  • 8,000 volunteers
  • 600 people employed through Tús and CE schemes
  • 600 people employed

The social impact takes account of the value of volunteer work and the benefit to the community of labour activation schemes.

Environmental impact

  • 14,775 tonnes diverted from landfill
  • Equal to the weight of the Dublin Bus fleet of 1,010 buses
  • 106,000 CO2e tonnes carbon savings

Through sales in their shop charities have diverted 14,775 tonnes of goods from landfill, the equivalent weight of the Dublin bus fleet. This has produced a carbon saving of 106,000 CO2e tonnes through the reuse of items sold in charity shops.

By shopping in a charity shop you are saving money, saving waste and saving the planet. You are also supporting many good causes as our members’ shops raise vital funds for charities nationwide. Many charities have seen an increase in demand for their services during the pandemic so your support is even more important now.

Shop, donate and volunteer in your local charity shop. Visit to find your local shop.


About the ICSA

The Irish Charity Shops Association is the umbrella organisation for registered charities who operate shops as part of their fundraising activities. We are funded by our 40 charity members, who operate over 470 shops nationwide. We support our members in running their charity shops to the highest standards, the proceeds of which help to fund much needed services in many communities nationwide.

These numbers are the results of the ICSA Benchmarking Survey for 2020, covering an average trading period of 23 weeks. The raw data was collected from 13 of our members representing 374 shops or 81%of the total. This was extrapolated to give a total that represents all of our 39 members who run 463 shops nationwide.


Paul Hughes

PR Officer ICSA

Email: [email protected]

Mobile: 087 8053778


  • July 9, 2021

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Our funders

EPA Circular Economy Programme

CRNI supports its members and works to mainstream reuse thanks to core funding provided by the EPA under the Circular Economy Programme.

For more information about the programme see here.

Project Funding

ReMark Quality Mark

CRNI received funding from the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications through the Circular Economy Innovation Grant Scheme to carry our the next phase of the ReMark project. 

For more information about the project see here.

Circular Textiles

CRNI is leading an EPA Green Enterprise project Circular Textiles, which will test the impact of three different separate collection systems for textiles and explore how we could manage the additional quantity of textiles that are collected. This project will be concluded in 2022.

For more information about the project see here.