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Our mission & history

Salvos Stores Mission Statement

Salvos Stores will continually develop its donor base of gifted and new products to provide customers with goods at affordable prices. 

Salvos Stores will demonstrate good corporate governance and stewardship, whilst creating the environment to align with the mission of The Salvation Army.

Salvos Stores shall foster the spirit of team work and equality amongst team members.

Salvos Stores History

History of Salvation Army Recycling Programs

The first Salvation Army recycling depots were opened in Australia in 1880 and provided work, accommodation and food for men leaving prison - known as a "Prison Gate Brigade Home".  With little or no machinery the work provided was labour intensive and was ideally suited to the target population. Collecting, sorting and baling waste paper was one example of an early environmentally-friendly project that many centres engaged in. In time, "jumble sales" were added, which enabled the poor to clothe themselves and their children with items discarded by the “better off” members of the community. Later other household items were also recycled by what was known as "Salvage Departments”.

From these humble beginnings The Salvation Army has developed a multi-million dollar recycling service. We currently operate the largest international network of collection centres, retail stores and recycled clothing export services. This development has been driven by our commitment to gaining the maximum benefits from the recycling industry in order to provide funds for the mission of The Salvation Army.

History of Recycling Programs in NSW, ACT, Qld

The Salvation Army in Sydney first operated a “Prison Gate Brigade Home” in Castlereagh Street (now buried under the Central Railway Station) from 1886 – 1887. This moved to 169 Albion Street, Surry Hills (1887 – 1891); 21 Parramatta Road, Ashfield (1891 – 1894); Silver Street, St Peters (1894 – 1902); Edgeware Road, Enmore (1902 – 1910); and finally to Bellevue Street, St Peters (1910 – to date).

Bellevue Street, St Peters was built around 1860 for a wool merchant named Captain George Talbot. The Salvation Army bought the house and land in 1904 and converted it to a “Prison Gate Farm” which opened in 1910. It was initially a 15 acre site, although The Salvation Army has sold much of this land over the years.  It had a piggery, housing up to 200 pigs, and stables to accommodate up to six horses.  The house was a two-storey Georgian style villa of brick.  The house was described in 1904 as being one of the most beautiful in St Peters and Tempe.

For about 120 years The Salvation Army operated in Sydney - initially as the Prison Gate Brigade, then Miroma Industries, Red Shield Industries, Red Shield Family Stores and now Salvos Stores.

A network of stores grew throughout NSW, ACT and Qld, some run by local Salvation Army churches and some operating in conjunction with Salvation Army Rehabilitation Services. In 1994 the Rehabilitation Services Command was established with part of its responsibility being the Red Shield Industries / Family Stores operations throughout Australia Eastern Territory (NSW, ACT, Qld). On 2 September 2001, Recovery Services Command and Red Shield Industries/ Family Stores administrative operations were separated to enable a more focused strategic direction for each.

On 1 January 2003, Red Shield Family Stores trading entity was renamed and branded "Salvos Stores".

A Business Review was concluded in December 2004 by an external Consulting Company.

January 2005 saw the appointment of a new General Manager. A re-vitalised Business Plan, as well as a new Strategic Plan, was introduced. The Organisation has changed dramatically.

Salvos Stores have an exciting plan for growth over the next five years and will further increase the help they provide the community through the good work, commitment and new product lines.