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Former doctor resigns to open Thrifters Village, North Finchley, to support Orphanage
She has given up the life of a successful doctor to open a charity shop – and Barbara Szabo said she “wouldn’t change a thing”.
The 32-year-old, of Watford Avenue, Hendon, opened Thrifters Village, in North Finchley High Street, last week.
It will raise money for Orphanage Matseri, in Hungary, where her husband Balazs grew up in “horrible” conditions.
Mother-of-two Barbara spent ten years working as a successful gynaecologist but said she was keen to switch careers to help those in need.
She said: “I want to make a big difference to the lives of these children. I’ve visited the orphanage and I was heartbroken at the disgusting conditions the children live in.
“We are so lucky – we have everything in England – we must be doing something to help them. At first it was an idea but then it grew and grew and I knew I just had to do it.
“I quit my job and decided to pour everything I had into the charity shop. It’s been a journey and it’s been expensive – but I wouldn’t change a thing about my new life.”
Despite making a financial loss and spending around a year finalising plans for the charity shop, she said she “couldn’t be prouder” of the results.
The store accepts donations but is also appealing to clothes shops which are closing down to donate leftover clothes and bric-a-brac.
She now juggles her time between parenting her two young daughters, who are three and 11, and working alone in the shop.
She added: “It’s not about the money. I’ve got enough and I’d rather help a cause I’m passionate about.
“People have been very supportive and I’m overwhelmed by it all. I feel very lucky to have the means to be able to open a shop like this. I staff it myself too.
“There are wonderful times ahead.”
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