Thrift stores see higher quality of donations during pandemic

They are receiving higher quality donations rather than quantity.
Published: Sep. 20, 2020 at 5:36 PM CDT
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA) - When you rely on donations and people being able to come into your store, how do you stay afloat during a global pandemic? Although changes had to be made, two Rapid City thrift stores say they’re doing well.

When the coronavirus pandemic hit South Dakota, the Thrift Store and We Care Thrift Store used the time closed to bring a better experience to its customers.

“The three weeks that we were closed, we were able to paint and do deep cleaning,” said Jeanni Gossard, the Thrift Store manager.

“During that time, we came in and just did a deep cleaning from floor to ceiling, remodeled, made extra room between the racks, built dressing rooms,” said Sara Koch, We Care Thrift Store manager.

Donations are crucial to both stores and Gossard said they are receiving higher quality donations rather than quantity.

“We would probably average anywhere from 10 to 14 pallets a day,” said Gossard. “It is less, but the quality has been outstanding, so we haven’t had to discard as many things.”

Koch said they’ve had not only new people donating but also new customers. Especially for their clothing voucher, which gives customers two free full sets of clothing every six months.

“Foot traffic is good. It’s just about the same as it used to be. We do a voucher program for clothing and that has increased, which has increased. Just this morning alone from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., I have probably done are least 20 clothing vouchers,” said Koch.

Both thrift stores do a part to keep customers safe by letting donations sit in a storage unit for a few days before they can be sold.

Copyright 2020 KOTA. All rights reserved.

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