I’ll never forget the day, my staff member, whose role is Latino Outreach, came into my office to let me know that a family who had lost everything in a fire had called our center in order to ask if we could provide them with a house full of furniture. They had lost everything in the fire, had no insurance and little means to replace their furniture. This is not an unusual request, in that our humanitarian center regularly helps people with all kinds of needs, whether that be food, clothes, furniture or mental health counseling.
What was unusual that day, was the fact that on the exact same day, we received a call from one of our regular donors. She wanted to donate a house full of furniture to our center. She knew that by giving us this furniture, we would normally turn around and sell these items through our thrift stores, which in turn directly supported our many outreach programs like our food pantry. Her furniture was very nice and would sell for a good price at our stores.
Before hanging up the phone, she asked if by chance we had a family who was in need of furniture. While she was fine giving it to us to sell through our stores, she would prefer it be given to a family who really needed it if there was someone who presented a need for it. [Read more…]