Just three hours a week can make a difference

Since 2001, Prince Edward Community Care’s Thrift Shop has been the main fundraiser for Community Care for Seniors.

All funds raised stay within Prince Edward County to help seniors live in the comfort of their own homes. In March 2020, like many other businesses, the Thrift Shop had to close. Over the past 2 1/2 years the shop has reopened, closed, reopened, closed, and reopened again. As we slowly recover, we face challenges, not only with fundraising but just as important recruiting volunteers.

The Thrift Shop is located at 153 Main Street in Picton, a 4,000 square foot building, operated entirely by volunteers. When the pandemic hit many had to stop volunteering and were unable to return when the shop reopened. For some it was due to age, caregiving for a loved one and for others it was the most common reason-the uncertainty of COVID-19. Before the pandemic there were 75 volunteers helping at the Thrift Shop.

Currently there are 35 volunteers to operate the store and to keep the shop doors open each week. Now you can see that we need more people and we need you! If you’ve been a volunteer, are thinking of volunteering, or you’re new to the community, this might be the place for you. Three hours a week is all we ask.

Currently the positions we need to fill immediately include the cash desk, assistance with picking up donations and a team to volunteer on Saturdays. Right now, we can only open the first Saturday of each month. An orientation and training are provided and there are experienced volunteers on site each day.

The Thrift Shop is also a great experience for students to obtain their mandatory community service hours. When talking with Thrift Shop volunteers we hear amazing, heartwarming stories about the customers, the exceptional donors, and the other volunteers they get to spend time with, often making friendships.

Thrift Shop hours are Monday 1:00 – 4:00pm, Tuesday through Friday 10:00am – 4:00 pm, Saturdays when open 11:00am – 3:00pm. For more information or start the conversation about volunteering at Community Care’s Thrift Shop call 613-476-7493. Check the Activity Calendar online for information about upcoming webinars and events. Get involved in the Active Living Programs.

The website also includes a full listing of services to help seniors live at home along with some great videos that illustrate what the agency does. www.communitycareforseniors.org

-Laura McGugan, Community Care coordinator