Montgomery County non-profit thrift store expanding - FOX 21/27 WFXR Roanoke/WWCW Lynchburg News, Weather

Montgomery County non-profit thrift store expanding

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Volunteers at Montgomery County Emergency Assistance Program don't mind lifting and loading items into the back of trucks. The organization is relocating and expanding their thrift store. Father Alex Darby is a local priest, whose extended family opened the shop 38 years ago.

"This is our fourth building and it's grown in size every time," said Darby.

In the last year, store leaders say they have overcome an identity crisis, which led to a sales explosion. Margie Vitale, store manager, says sales are up around $10,000 and they need more space for donations.

"People think that we're a county program, and that we're only here for poor people, and while part of that is true, we're not just here for poor people. We sell, and the money that we make, we're able to help," said Vitale.

MCEAP is nearly doubling their square-footage from the old facility which gives volunteers more space to work, and customers more space to shop for things like shoes and clothes.

These are items that typically sell for no more than $2 a piece. They are some of the lowest prices around. About $4,000 a week in average revenue is helping low-income families in the area.

"I think we're going to be able to reach out to people in the Radford community as well. I mean, we don't just sell to people in Montgomery County. We have very faithful customers that come all the way from Floyd," said Vitale.

Volunteers plan to finish moving items out of the old store later this week. They hope most of their new space will fill up with donations and shoppers. The store will have a grand re-opening on Friday.