London thrift store doubles in size after receiving an overflow of donated clothes and appliances.
Mission Services of London, a nonprofit relief organization, has moved from its roughly 30-year-old home on William Street and officially opens its new location on Saturday at 4-797 York Street, a space almost double in size.
“We’ve basically moved beyond that space,” said Connie Supria, communications manager for Mission Services of London. “We were able to look for something that would be more suitable for our clients and our customers. “
Since it pre-opened in May, the new 17,000 square foot building, which includes the thrift store and an office extension, has attracted nearly 150 customers per day. That’s about 50 more customers than the number who visited the old 6,000 square foot store.
Donations have been pouring in from individuals and local businesses for more than 50 years since the organization’s inception. However, Supria is grateful that recent increases in donations have forced the thrift store to move to a larger, more accessible location.
The new location caters to a range of customers from different backgrounds, offering an accessible building with larger parking and an active bus route, a feature not available in the old location.
The organization relies heavily on donations from independent, municipal and provincial governments. Last year it brought in around $ 8 million in donations, including over $ 3 million in donations from independent citizens alone.
“We are completely independent to serve London and the surrounding area, and we continue to do so to this day,” Supria said.
With around 10 departments inundated with seasonal housewares, electronics, books, clothing and outdoor items, more than 15 staff members volunteer their time in the store to serve the community. It also caters to underprivileged citizens through subsidized prices, such as school desks retailing for $ 120 and selling for a low cost of $ 10, Supria said.
The Mission store provides financial assistance to community members in need.
The organization’s voucher program partners with more than 50 local agencies, including the Cross Cultural Learner Center and The Salvation Army, to provide free multi-item vouchers to customers in need. People with vouchers can enter the store and choose items for free. Last year, the London-based organization spent over $ 400,000 in voucher fees alone.
Grand opening of the mission store:
When: Saturday July 23, 8:30 a.m.
Or: Mission Services of London Mission Store, 4-797 York Street