Shopping and education normally don’t go hand-in-hand. But for a trendy new store along Hwy. 20, that’s exactly the case.
Tammy van den Brink, one of the creators of the soon-to-be opened Renewed Thrift & Vintage, wanted to take a different approach in raising much needed dollars for Jordan Christian School. The privately run school relies on a bevy of fundraising efforts to exist, so a group of volunteers sought out a new way to keep a consistent cash flow coming in.
Store’s such as these have been picking up in communities as many are taking a new approach to raising funds for organizations. While the idea had always been an option, the amount of work and staff going into such a project had always kept the project on the back-burner.
“We’re looking at a volunteer base of around 50 people who will be helping run the store,” van den Brink said. “So the support from our community has been great thus far as everyone has chipped in with painting and getting the store ready to open.”
The store, located beside the Thorold Fire Hall on Hwy. 20, will carry gently used clothing, housewares, toys, books, and furniture at a low cost. She says it will run much like a thrift store but with an emphasis on vintage and trendy items.
“We’re not going to be that typical store you walk into and everything is everywhere. We want to have everything set up nicely and be organized with high-end products.”
The store is anything but typical, however. On top of raising funds for their school, they will also be putting a focus on helping out the community. A portion of the proceeds each month will head to charities such as Pelham Cares. That, added with the low cost approach to shopping second-hand, allows the store to be not only beneficial, but an essential in the community.
“We’re also trying to spread our faith while helping out the communities with different charities. With many of the clothes and items donated, it’s a great way to not only recycle, but make changes on how average fundraising efforts go.”
So far, the hardest part of the process has been changing a former car dealership into something they can be proud of. With volunteers pounding the pavement looking for residents with excess of materials, the store is preparing for a late November opening.
“The support of the school and the community has been amazing,” van den Brink said. “This couldn’t be possible without donations so we are grateful for everything we’ve received.”
Once the store opens, they will have a drop-off box for residents. Those interested in donating before the opening can contact van den Brink at 905-931-5902 or by email at [email protected] They also set up a Facebook page where progress on the store can be monitored at www.facebook.com/renewedthriftandvintage.