We are a charity based in Chesham, Buckinghamshire empowering young people to help themselves by developing the skills and knowledge needed to find gainful employment or start their own business. We do this by refurbishing donated tools to a high standard and shipping them to training centres and self-help organisations in some of the world’s most disadvantaged communities. In 2015 we received the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service. To get involved you can volunteer, donate your tools or give a gift to change a life.

At Workaid, we are committed to tackling poverty in a practical way by supporting young people in East Africa and in the UK to build sustainable livelihoods through skills training.

Unwanted tools and equipment are donated and refurbished by a team of enthusiastic volunteers at the Workaid workshop.

The refurbished tools are then sent to vocational training projects where they help young people learn trade skills and start their own businesses.

Every year, Workaid helps over 9,000 people break the cycle of poverty and rebuild their lives. We assist projects working with orphans, street children, unemployed teenagers, disabled people, people living with HIV/AIDS, widows and refugees.

By working with carefully monitored projects we are able to make a difference to individuals and families and help communities to build a brighter future together.

Early Workaid in Amersham


The 1980s saw one of the worst humanitarian disasters of the twentieth century. In 1984, famine in Ethiopia left over 1 million people dead and a further 8 million at risk of starvation (source BBC). As governments and individuals were concentrating their efforts on emergency relief following the LiveAid appeal, a group of friends from Buckinghamshire who were determined to provide long-term practical assistance began a ground-breaking project, to help the people of East Africa escape the cycle of poverty and rebuild their lives.

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The Old Boot Factory Photo


In 2010 Workaid moved in to a large warehouse/workshop which was formerly a boot and shoe factory in Chesham.

Along with the workshop, we have a shop specialising in tools and hardware, gardening equipment, lawn mowers, electrical items, craft materials, haberdashery and sewing and knitting machines which are unsuitable for shipping to the projects we support to help cover our shipping costs.

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UK Bicycle Fair


In 2019 we shipped 8 containers to Africa, two each to Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia. The overall shipping cost to get each container to Africa starts at about £10k, so we are continually seeking funds to support this.

In our fundraising efforts we seek donations from individuals, Trusts and from other funding bodies. You can find out more about the ways you can help by visiting our Donate page.

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