Numerous vital Dundee charities fear they could be weeks away from being made homeless from a shared premises.
The Dunsinane Avenue warehouse include foodbanks, church groups, and community groups.
They are all given free rent at the 94,500 square foot Lochee property by current owners Aydya.
But Lochee Community Group founder and leaseholder Alison Walker, who sublets to the others, says Aydya broke the devastating news a new owner will take over imminently.
She is concerned the new landlord, whose name has not been made public, will look to clear the warehouse for a sole tenant.
Aydya could not be reached for comment but Dundee City Council say they are aware of the development and are offering assistance to the charities.
It is not yet clear if the sale has been finalised.
Groups crucial in helping vulnerable
It’s feared if a solution is not found quickly, a proportion of the city’s third sector safety net could give way.
Many of the groups are already packing up so they can quickly leave at short notice, while some have left already.
Lochee Community Group is the main charity based at the building and helps people from all backgrounds in the local area tackle poverty and social isolation.
One of its main functions is to collect donated and salvaged goods and repurpose them for those in need.
Founder Alison Walker said: “Aydya emailed to tell us about the sale.
“It stated the buyer wants vacant possession.
“We’re worried about finding a new home for us and all these groups in a short space of time.
“The Dundee Communities Warehouse was formed by us to service all of the smaller groups throughout the city for things such as homewares and clothes.
“We have been running clearance sales and freebies.”
Foodbank demand at highest-ever level
Another of those affected is Yusuf Youth Initiative, which runs community outreach programmes and the Taught by Muhammad (TBM) foodbank.
The charity had been trying to find a permanent home for years amid fear of this exact situation.
CEO Faisal Hussein said: “The owner has been very helpful and allowed all charities to operate on a rent-free basis, only paying for utilities.
“I understand any new owner may want sole use and a quick turnaround.
“We need something short term until we secure a more permanent space.”
TBM foodbank is a crucial part of a new project called the Dundee Food Insecurity Network.
The network was set up at the start of the pandemic last year as a joint response to the huge spike in referrals due to the virus and government restrictions.
The number of people referred for emergency help from TBM shot up an incredible 1000% at the height of the crisis in April — the highest ever.
It has remained around five times higher than average ever since.
It is understood Dundee Science Centre also lease an area in the premises as do various businesses including EC Finance.
The unit housed a Levi’s factory until the US-based clothing business left the city at the turn of the century.
A Dundee City Council spokesperson said: “The council is engaging with the charity to provide advice on property options.”