M&C Saatchi Abel says that the Street Store is a rent-free, pop-up clothing store for the homeless that is returning post-pandemic.

The agency says that it is committed with supporting the homeless with a dignified shopping experience with this initiaitve.

The Street Store is an open source, not-for-profit initiative calling on the public and organisations to bring their clothes and 'hang up to help out'.

Creating shop-like opportunities for the homeless who need free clothes and shoes, with the help of volunteers, adds the agency.

Following its launch in January 2014 in Cape Town, The Street Store has expanded globally, prompting communities across the world to help clothe and support those in their community that need a hand. 

"What started off as a local activation in Cape Town has taken place over 950 times globally and helped clothe over 500 000 people to date around the world, supported by the community for the community. It is now a valued contribution to many in need," says Ille Potgieter, managing director of M&C Saatchi Abel Cape Town.

Made up of a series of cardboard posters that double up as clothes hangers, the pop-up stores allow those with extra clothes to hang up, help out and give homeless people the chance to 'shop' and wear the clothes they like, says Potgieter.

Superbalist.com, a long-time partner of M&C Saatchi Abel, says that it lends its support to the initiative to help get these much-needed pop-ups back to the communities that so need them.

The brand says that this will be done by providing an initial large donation of clothes for the upcoming two stores. The clothing brand hopes that it will not only help jumpstart the return of Street Stores but also calls on consumers and South Africans to do their part and donate to help the rollout of even more in the coming months.

"For those of us who have never had to worry about clothing, shelter and other necessities we take for granted, we can take a step back and acknowledge our circumstances and those that others may find themselves in," says Tumi Sebopa, head of brand of Superbalist.com.

Sebopa adds, "Our involvement is a stark reminder that — while in the business of clothing — many South Africans are relegated to rummaging in bins or begging for clothing, another reason why we are passionate about this cause and have also set up donation boxes at our Richmond Park Click-n-Collect point that will provide additional clothing for forthcoming Street Stores."

As the initiative nears its 1 000th Street Store, the first two in over two years will take place in Cape Town (Saturday, 23 July) and Johannesburg (Saturday, 30 July) from 09:00 to midday. More about the Street Stores and their locations can be found on Facebook.

"The Street Store was always meant to be a means to support and clothe those who were unable to do so for themselves. We're grateful to be able to bring our initiative with the support of Superbalist to communities in Cape Town and Johannesburg after devastating two-and-a-half years as a result of the pandemic, global unrest and the rising cost of living," concludes Mike Abel, founder and chief executive of M&C Saatchi Group South Africa.

Individuals who would like to donate or volunteer can contact 011 268 6388 (Johannesburg) or 021 421 1024 (Cape Town).

For more information, visit www.thestreetstore.org. You can also follow Street Store on Facebook, Twitter or on Instagram.