A few of you know I work for Goodwill Industries of Greater Grand Rapids home of the famous Goodwill Retail Stores. I am the marketing director for this nonprofit agency. Many people have no idea that Goodwill is a nonprofit and even more so that we have anything more than thrift stores. So I am going to use my blog to promote Goodwill because I am flying pretty high after opening out 5th new store in the Grand Rapids MI area market.
The Grand Opening of our newest store on 54th Street in Wyoming was yesterday and I had no idea how many people would come but to give you an idea we had a line around the block at 8am in the morning, we opened at 9am and it was freezing outside. People waited 45minutes to get through the check out lines and customers bought an average of $53 per person. Pretty cool!
I am pretty proud of these stores because this is not your grandma’s Goodwill. These are brightly lit stores with fresh decor and a whole new spin on thrift store shopping with 15% new items for sale, a drive through donation center and even an optical center.
So back to my original mission, telling bloggers who Goodwill is. We are a non profit with the mission of: Change Lives & Communities Through the Power of Work.
So what does that mean? Well we have 12 thrift store locations in the Grand Rapids area and we fund raise to help people who have limitations, whether physical, emotional, or chemical, with job training and job placement services. We have over 30 programs to help people from every circumstance imaginable. Some of the programs include a certified nurses training program targeted to at risk youth, a prisoner reentry program, a hospitality and catering program, manufacturing opportunities and on top of that we have 500 of our own employees.
To top all these great things off Goodwill Industries International is the biggest recycler in the country with all of our stores combined throughout the country and abroad. Talk about being Green!
Pretty cool huh!
So watch out West Michigan, we are hoping to change the way people think of thirft stores and hopefully boost the local economy too by putting people to work.
Next Grand Opening – Plainfield Store in March 2008.