A scheme to collect unwanted toiletries from the Isles of Scilly and donate them to vulnerable women has had a boost this week.

The Isles of Scilly Steamship Group, via its Community Fund, has offered to transport the items from St Mary’s to Penzance, where they will be destined for homeless shelters and women’s refuges in Cornwall.

Now Sue Major, the woman behind the worthwhile project has called for donations of everything from shampoo and sanitary products to toothpaste and sun cream.

“It’s a way of giving women a little bit of dignity in a very difficult situation,” said Sue. “The thought of a young woman, maybe someone homeless or who’s living in a refuge, trying to keep clean and deal with periods is just appalling.

“We’ve all got bits and bobs hidden away in cupboards, which these women could make use of. We only collect unused products, though sometimes new but opened things are included. It’s such a little thing but it will make a big difference.

“We’re also aware of the needs of women regarding sanitary products and I do occasionally buy things to include when they’re on offer.

“It’s just fantastic that the Steamship Group has offered to help in getting the toiletries to the mainland, and I’m very grateful to the Community Fund.

“At the moment we are quite a small group – part Inner Wheel and part my friends – and many on the islands will be unaware of our project.”

Toiletries are being collected at the charity shop on St Mary’s, which is open on Tuesday afternoons and Saturday mornings, and at the Steamship Group office in Hugh Town.

A milestone £50,000 has been donated to local groups and good causes over the past three years by the Community Fund, which was launched in 2016.

Applications to the Community Fund are open to voluntary groups or charities, schools and education establishments, community clubs or societies, and individuals undertaking not-for-profit projects for the benefit of the wider community.

Full details, eligibility criteria and application forms are now available from the Steamship Group’s website. All projects are judged by members of an independent panel.