By giving to Donation Centers like the Rescue Mission, you're helping them give even more. In part one of our look at the Rescue Mission, our Iris St. Meran showed what you can donate and how the items are sorted in the warehouse. Now, she shows us how the sales of those donated items go back to the community.
LIVERPOOL, N.Y. -- From the looks of it, the Thrifty Shopper store is like any other retail establishment.
Thrifty Shopper Sales Manager Brent Piech said, "Clothing is our number one seller. It counts for 60 to 70 percent of our sales there. Some of the items the customers really love are all the household items. We're always putting those out two to three times a week."
The difference is the merchandise is donated. Thrifty Shopper is the Rescue Mission's store. The workforce includes staff and volunteers who help sell items from jeans to couches and everything in between.
"Probably one of the strangest things I've ever sold, it was a type of helmet,” Piech said. “It had tubes coming out of it and everything we didn't know what it was. And it was some type of expensive work equipment."
There's no such thing as a typical shopper here. This store serves those in need as well as others looking for a good deal.
"A little digging, yes. I like them we go and we can get toys. I have two young children and they don't play with things long enough. So, we get toys and books and maybe summer shoes," said Amber Hotaling said.
That digging and eventual purchase is worth it because it pays for even more, like the daily meals and holiday dinners that are served.
Rescue Mission Chief Operating Officer said, "Just by giving a t-shirt to the donation center you might have been providing three meals by doing that. By giving an outfit, an old outfit, a suit or whatever it might be, you might be providing an overnight stay for someone in need."
Thornton says the goal is to net more than $3 million from sales annually, which goes to those programs. For people who can't afford to purchase from the stores in Broome, Cayuga and Onondaga counties, they're given clothes. In the Syracuse area 70,000 articles of clothing are provided each year.
If you're thinking about helping out, winter coats, as well as men's and children's clothing are the most needed.
To learn more about the donation process and also find information about the Rescue Mission's programs and services, visit www.rmlifechanging.org.