The Dogs’ Homes of Tasmania are a state-wide, non-profit organisation, devoted to the care and re-homing of lost or abandoned dogs. As we revealed recently, it’s a great place to adopt a dog, and we’re happy to be supporting the important work they do. That connection has also sparked an interest in the award-winning business called Petside. We went to the shop at 96 Clarence Street in Bellerive this morning to learn more.
Petside and the Dogs’ Homes of Tasmania
Petside is a shop selling dog food and accessories, as well as a small range of products for cats and other pets. It is the result of a collaboration between the Dogs’ Homes of Tasmania and the Parkside Foundation, another non-profit organisation operating in southern Tasmania. The Parkside Foundation provide support services to older people and those with disabilities, their carers and families.
The Petside venture is designed to provide a place of employment for people with disabilities. Working alongside support staff, volunteers are encouraged to assist customers, handle money and display stock, gaining valuable vocational skills. Parkside clients have also been trained in the correct use of the animal products and accessories they sell, so they can share their knowledge with customers.
Net profits from the sale of the competitively-priced pet supplies are forwarded to the Dogs’ Homes of Tasmania. Originally only open two days a week, Petside is now staffed from Monday to Friday, meeting the demand of Parkside clients wishing to participate. While the pet-supplies business gradually attracts a larger customer base, clients make additional products in the craft room on-site. Gift cards and soaps are available for purchase, and would make perfect stocking-fillers for Christmas.
City of Clarence: Best New Business
Petside is not just a unique business, they’ve also been named the 2013 “Best New Business” at the City of Clarence/Business East awards, a fantastic achievement. Sales are still growing, and hopefully the increased exposure they’ll now receive in the media will assist that aim. However, the Parkside Foundation like to measure the success of the venture in improved outcomes for people with disabilities, and by promoting their own brand and that of the Dogs’ Homes of Tasmania.
We had a great chat with Vanessa Sullivan, just one of many support workers on the store’s roster. As often the case with small business owners, the team at Petside are happy to cross-promote others in the industry. They share information about local dog-walkers, animal hospitals and pet-sitters to their own customers.
The central shopping area is large, filled with light and extremely tidy; the shelves are stocked neatly and logically. We were impressed with the range of quality supplies offered, all sold at reasonable prices. We were also a little embarrassed to admit we’d driven past (on numerous occasions!) without stopping to investigate. We were prompted to rectify the oversight when Petside were announced as the Business East award-winners last Thursday night.
The Parkside Foundation
Anne Summers is the Business Manager at The Parkside Foundation, and she kindly provided Think Tasmania with information and client photos for this story. Anne can be contacted by email or phone (03) 6243 6044 for further details, or visit the offices of The Parkside Foundation at 34 Wellington Road in Lindisfarne. Local business owners looking to support a worthwhile initiative might be interested to know that activities and opportunities have been extended to other client groups in the organisation through the operation of Petside…
- a client group make dog biscuits for sale at Petside
- a community access walking group deliver promotional fliers to letterboxes in the vicinity
- a maintenance group are involved in pickup and delivery between
the Dogs’ Homes of Tasmania and Petside
Petside is at 96 Clarence Street in Bellerive on the eastern shore region of Hobart. They’re open Monday to Friday from 9.00am to 3:00pm and have an extensive range of products, all endorsed by the Dogs’ Homes of Tasmania. Free parking is provided at the front door, and the number 11 Metro Tasmania bus stop is directly opposite the entrance. Phone (03) 6244 4343… or better still, visit in person!
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