A Penarth charity which provides thousands of tools a year to Sub-Saharan Africa could be on the brink of collapse unless it gets a new home.

Tools with a Mission (TWAM), which collects, cleans up and ships off unwanted tools to those in need, has been established in Penarth for nearly 15 years, and moved into the premises on Dingle Lane opposite Bute Cottage Nursery in 2010.

Despite sending tens of thousands of tools to low-economically developed countries during that time, a charity restructure has resulted in the Penarth branch being pinpointed for closure next year.

“The demand for tools has doubled in recent years and to cope with that demand a new base is to be set up in Coventry,” said committed member Andrew Kelland.

Penarth Times: Andrew Kelland at work at TWAM on Dingle LaneAndrew Kelland at work at TWAM on Dingle Lane

“The base requires significantly more investment, so two branches must go – and Penarth is one of them.”

With around 20 volunteers in Penarth and a dozen collecting unwanted tools around south Wales, the demand continues to be high.

In 2019 the charity supplied 2901 sewing machines, 250 knitting machines, 962 carpentry kits, 431 motor mechanic kits, 236 electrical kits, 201 plumber kits, and 853 computers.

The tools help to transform the lives of the recipients and their families.

To continue doing the work Mr Kelland says they must “reinvent” themselves.

“We need to identify a new premises and we need to become a self-funded charity with help from the Welsh Government and the Glamorgan Voluntary Services,” he added.

“A cadre of volunteers are determined to try and re-invent TWAM Penarth as an independent charity, performing the same role.

“We have sufficient volunteers prepared to act as Charity Trustees, including an accountant.

“Our preferred solution would be to remain in our current location, and the owner has indicated a willingness to sell the unit to us.
“The asking price is beyond our capabilities, but might be of interest to a generous investor?
“To date we have considered locating a new premises to be our prime driver, but have had little success, and hope that the Vale of Glamorgan Council will be able to assist.”