A new toy swap shop and
activity club for children is to be launched in Daventry.
Michael McGrory, from Ashby Fields in Daventry, is setting up the community non-profit venture after securing funding for it.
He is now looking for volunteers to get involved, and businesses to provide support.
Until a few years ago, Mr McGrory, 46, had two successful businesses but, due to a spinal problem preventing him from working, lost both as well as his home and subsequently suffered an emotional meltdown.
He said: “I went from having everything to nothing. Bromford Support helped me back on my feet. I then went on a course with PDH housing association for people wanting to set up community enterprises, and after that I put this idea forward at a Dragons’ Den-style event and got funding to cover the hire of the venue. I’ve had help from DDH and Enterprise Cube as well.
“I thought it was important to get back into work, doing something I can do with my spinal problems. It’s important for my three kids to know that you can’t give up but have to keep going.
“I am looking for volunteers to help for three hours on a Saturday. They can get involved with a range of things. I’d also like to get businesses involved as well. If everyone gives a little, then the children of Daventry will benefit a lot.
“I’ve spoken to businesses as well, including Tesco and Co-op, and I’ll be talking to others too about sponsoring events.
“We will be charging £1 for annual membership and there will be a £2 fee to attend each event. Half the profit will be given back to the children of Daventry via vouchers at Christmas for new toys.
“I have lots of ideas to grow the club and hope this will be the first of many that extends beyond Daventry in time.”
John Wade, a director at Bromford, said: “Michael has been through so much but his determination to make his dream a reality plus his tenacity in the face of so many knock backs is an inspiration.
“Michael has shown if you know where you want to get to and you have the right attitude then anything is possible.”
Anyone interested in volunteering with the toy swap shop can email miketoyswap firstname.lastname@example.org