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By Jamie Stewart
The Shafter Press 

Thrift on the Green raises awareness and funds

 

Last updated 10/15/2022 at 6:38am | View PDF

Jamie Stewart | The Shafter Press

Katie Wiebe, Nancy Neufeld and Melissa Bergen are the leaders of the thrift-store project.

The Shafter Mennonite Brethren Church hosted an event on Sunday to raise funds and awareness for a proposed thrift store in Shafter. Katie Wiebe, Melissa Bergen and Nancy Neufeld were on hand to help raise funds as part of the Mennonite Central Committee's group of stores across the nation.

There was free food, games and information booths, as well as activities for kids and adults, helping the group introduce themselves to the community. Wiebe said that the idea was formed after the positive experiences that she and Bergen had while being a part of the Shafter Christmas Store. That program allows parents to buy presents at Christmas time at a big discount, giving them a sense of accomplishment, knowing that they bought the presents themselves for their kids.

Wiebe found out about the Mennonite Central Committee's operation of thrift stores across the country. They are businesses that sell household items, clothing, sporting goods and gently used furniture at discount prices.

They are comparable to a Goodwill stores, but with a more intimate and community-related vibe to them.

Wiebe said that once the store is operational, 90% of the proceeds go to the worldwide program. Ten percent of the proceeds would go to the Shafter community. The store will employ Shafter residents, giving a boost to the local economy, as well as giving the community a better option than going outside Shafter to buy similar items.

Wiebe said that they are searching for a building that they could acquire that will meet their needs. The building would have to have a showroom, as well as access to the back of the building for deliveries. "We have talked to a few people, but we are still looking for a building," said Wiebe.

Jamie Stewart | The Shafter Press

Bingo was on tap for the event.

A large number of residents were on hand to help the event run smoothly. Donna Nickel and Deanna Peters were serving tri-tip beef, beans, macaroni salad and rolls at no charge.

Nickel said that she is looking forward to the opening of the store. "This is so great for our community. I think that we really need a store like this, being able to buy quality items at a lower price. We wouldn't even have to leave Shafter!" commented Nickel.

Peters said that it will also mean jobs for Shafter, as well as a great place to shop.

Those interested in getting involved in the project can contact Bergen at 661-776=5866. To donate, you can send a tax-deductible check to Listen to Shafter, with "Thrift" on in the memo line, to P.O. Box 489, Shafter 93263.

You can also donate at @listentoshafter.org, (Thrift On).

 

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