Thursday October 28, 2010 • 12:00pm • 510 1st Ave. SW • Hickory, NC 28602
Exodus Homes, a faith-based United Way agency providing 82 beds of supportive housing for homeless recovering people, is about to celebrate another dream come true. In order to survive the recession, they have expanded their social enterprise, Exodus Works, to create jobs for residents of the program in fully insured landscaping, moving, cleaning, odd jobs, general labor and mobile car detailing. As part of the plan to create more jobs and sell surplus donated items, they are opening a new thrift store at 510 1st Ave SW in Hickory. A Grand Opening ceremony and ribbon cutting will be held at noon on Thursday October 28, 2010 followed by light refreshments and tours. Rev. Reggie Longcrier, Exodus Homes executive director is excited about this new venture saying, “A thrift store has been part of the vision for many years and it is right on time. We are struggling to survive, and selling surplus donated items will help us make it to a better day.”
The new thrift store will also house an office for Exodus Works, so that supervisors of the social enterprise can have more space to work. ExodusWorks currently has three full time supervisors, 25 part time employees, and is the biggest employer of Exodus Homes residents. The two story 9,000 sq. ft. facility also serves as a warehouse. Donated items such as furniture, clothing, and household goods not used in any of the 10 program locations of Exodus Homes will be rotated through the store for sale. Photographs of items in the warehouse will be available for customers to review if they don’t see what they need in the store.
Exodus Homes residents have been working for weeks to clean and sort items for sale in the store. The United Church of Christ Linking In New Creative (LINC) ministry team representing four local churches worked to improve the outside of the store by replacing rotten wood, painting, and removing a large metal pole that had been used in the past to hold a sign. Dave Leonetti, City of Hickory Senior Planner, and Sally Fox, Hickory City Council representative helped Exodus Homes locate the new warehouse after their previous warehouse downtown had been condemned last spring.
Ward 4 Hickory City Council representative Hank Guess will be on hand to cut the ribbon along with other city officials and Exodus Homes’ board members. The public is invited to attend. Exodus Homes needs donations of furniture, clothes, and household items in good condition for the 82 residents of the program, and the thrift store. Donated items can be picked up if necessary by calling Exodus Homes Director of Operations Jerry Ratliff at 828-781-3222.
For more information about the thrift store grand opening, or to donate items, contact Rev. Susan Smith 828-962-8196. For more information about Exodus Homes or Exodus Works, go to www.exodushomes.org