Volunteers are being sought at the St. James Caring Center during the summer months. Help is needed sorting items and working the facility’s Thrift Store and helping out is a great way for young adults and retired volunteers to give back to the community. There is no set schedule, which means volunteers can work anytime they have available.
“This is a great opportunity for teens to give back to their community this summer. There is no set schedule, which makes it convenient for those that are retired to stop by for an hour or more anytime between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m.,” Executive Director Ramona Rinehart said. “When they come in, we give them a tour of the center and show them what to do. Our food pantry is good, but we need volunteers willing to price, sort, and work the store.”
The Thrift Store is a prime funding vehicle for the many programs the Caring Center has available to residents in St. James. All proceeds from items donated to the store and sold to shoppers provide funding for projects aimed at assisting low-income families in the community.
“It’s the summer and we get a lot of donations. A lot of our volunteers are older and go take vacations during this time of year. The problem is, the donations don’t stop. We get a lot of household items and knick knacks, clothes, shoes, purses, and all sorts of stuff that we have to get ready for the store,” Rinehart said.
Along with Thrift Store items, many of the donations that come through the facility are no longer usable, but are great for recycling. “When we have enough to fill the truck, we take it for recycling and can bring in about $2,500 per load. Things like clothes with broken zippers, old toys, purses, all these things can be recycled and bring in more money for our programs.”
The many donations are greatly appreciated and, along with funding, also provide for local residents in need. “This is great for teens who are tired of the pool and don’t have anything to do. They can work a half hour, an hour, or five hours, any amount of time they want to give. The only set schedule is for the register to make sure someone is always there. Any time someone wants to volunteer is greatly appreciated,” Rinehart said.
Anyone interested in volunteering time can do so by stopping into the Caring Center or by calling (573) 265-2047.