PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. — After a significant fire in March closed their doors for months, a thrift shop changing the lives of formerly homeless is back open and providing more than retail therapy.
Marcie Cohen has worked in retail her whole life, but she says Joshua Thrift Store, an enterprise under The Lord's Place provides real purpose.
"It's a job that's very rewarding," Cohen said. "And people are getting their life back."
And the line that formed an hour before opening at 10 a.m. is evidence the public knows it.
Meredith Fontenot, The Lord's Place director of thrift and donor relations said this store works in three ways:
- Purchases directly support Lord's Place programs and services for the homeless
- Donations from the public are provided at "no cost to clients" to help them on their journey out of homelessness
- Stores allow formerly homeless the opportunity to gain skills through retail apprenticeships
"It's very cyclical," Fontenot said. "We need donations in order to keep things rolling for our clients both monetarily and for the physical things that you give."
"The way you become housed is to have a stream of income. And how do you get a stream of income? You get a job," added Kerry Diaz, The Lord’s Place chief operating officer (COO).
Diaz said the timing of the opening further supports their mission with the winter "season" around the corner.
"We can't do this without the donations," she said. "And that's what people are shopping for, so donations are key and that's a big uptick during season."
All three Lord's Place Joshua Thrift Stores are hiring.
Jobs include donation handlers, retail associates and even management. You do not have to be part of the Lord's Place to apply. Click here to learn more.
Additionally, volunteers play a key role in the support and success of Joshua Thrift Stores. The Lord's Place is currently seeking more volunteers.
Click here for more information regarding volunteering.