With its racks of designer garments, sneakers, purses and different gadgets − all donated − the Practically New Store is likely one of the best-kept trend secrets and techniques on the town, in accordance with the Louisville part of the Nationwide Council of Jewish Girls.
Positioned on the decrease degree of the Mid-Metropolis Mall within the Highlands, the 24,000-square-foot retailer has “gently used” males’s and ladies’s clothes − starting from formal put on to exercise put on − youngsters’s garb, equipment, furnishings, jewellery, china, glassware and even instruments and workplace gear.
Proceeds assist the advocacy work of the group, which focuses on youngster and household welfare, together with a serious fundraising marketing campaign it led to reopen a Household Restoration Courtroom in Louisville for folks and youngsters affected by medication and alcohol.
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Now, because the store’s annual “Style Encore” three-day sale in October approaches, Jane Emke, a longtime member of the council, is working to advertise its picture and develop alternatives for volunteers and retail coaching for job-seekers together with individuals in Jefferson County’s restoration courtroom.
Emke, 81, and a volunteer for greater than 50 years with the council, mentioned she’s prepared for a brand new problem after serving to lead a fundraising drive that introduced in about $600,000 to restart the restoration courtroom in 2018, certainly one of a number of former household drug courts statewide that closed in 2010 amid a finances shortfall.
The 2 household restoration courts in Jefferson County, which give intense supervision and therapy for folks and their youngsters affected by dependancy, now are working on a $375,000-a-year allocation from the Kentucky Common Meeting, added to the state finances this 12 months with the assistance of two state senators from Louisville, Morgan McGarvey, a Democrat, and Julie Raque Adams, a Republican.
“I needn’t fundraise anymore,” Emke mentioned. “Now I can flip my consideration to turning the store round.”
Whereas the store remains to be doing effectively, elevated prices and fewer volunteers imply much less cash raised for advocacy work of the council, mentioned Nancy Chazen, government director of the Louisville chapter of the council.
The council wish to enhance proceeds by elevating its profile in a altering retail market and by growing volunteers to complement its “hardworking” employees of 9, Chazen mentioned. A few of its longtime volunteers left amid the COVID-19 pandemic that started in early 2020 and did not return.
Practically New was based by the council in 1956 with an all-volunteer employees when fewer girls had been within the workforce, mentioned Joyce Bridge, council president. With way more girls working at the moment, the store has transitioned to extra paid employees, she mentioned.
However Chazen mentioned the store already is seeing a rise in volunteers amid recruiting efforts by Emke and others.
“Jane has been been nice at re-energizing our volunteers,” Chazen mentioned.
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Emke mentioned most of the volunteers she’s contacted are retired and prepared to commit just a few hours per week to the store. Duties embody sorting, tagging, organizing and displaying donated items.
Emke mentioned the store additionally hopes to rent extra folks finishing restoration courtroom to provide them work expertise and maybe launch a program that might present some type of certification in retail work.
Dakota McCord, 32, who’s near finishing restoration courtroom, works at Practically New 5 days per week, a job she mentioned she loves. Her work helps her transfer nearer to her targets of turning into impartial and regaining custody of her younger son, whom she quickly misplaced custody of due to dependancy, she mentioned.
McCord, who mentioned she grew up amid dependancy and skilled home violence, mentioned she has been drug-free for greater than a 12 months and has her son a part of every week. She hopes she will be able to encourage others to imagine there’s a greater life via restoration.
“I’ve recognized so many people who find themselves addicted and don’t suppose there’s a method out,” McCord mentioned.
Chazen mentioned offering jobs for staff together with McCord is a part of the store’s mission.
“We’re blissful to have the ability to do this,” she mentioned. “An a company, we wish to make sure that we’re uplifting these girls.”
The store is also working to develop its attain in a altering market, Chazen mentioned.
With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, extra folks switched to on-line buying or shopping for items although big-box stores, she mentioned. And a few had been hesitant to buy in individual, via Chazen mentioned Practically New is seeing a gradual enhance in prospects.
To counter these developments, Chozen mentioned the council will enhance advertising and marketing and promoting after slicing again throughout the pandemic.
Emke mentioned the council is also wanting into growing its social media presence, most lately via Tik Tok movies created by a younger lady she met who was buying at Practically New.
One factor the pandemic helped with was to herald a brand new surge of donations that employees and volunteers are nonetheless sorting, Emke mentioned.
“Everybody cleaned out their closets,” she mentioned.
This 12 months, Emke mentioned the store hopes to draw extra prospects at its annual Style Encore sale via particular occasions together with a “scarf college” to show scarf-tying strategies. Among the many fashions, she mentioned, can be household restoration courtroom judges Lauren Ogden and Angela Johnson.
Style Encore takes place Oct. 22, 23 and 24 from 10 a.m. to five p.m. The headband college can be held Oct. 23 at 1 p.m.
Contact reporter Deborah Yetter at [email protected] or on Twitter at @d_yetter.