Jewish Journal


April 4, 2013

Saving Money and Saving Lives



By Michael Welch

There is a new song out there dedicated to thrift shops, it’s catchy, has a nice rhythm and is an ode to the bargain shopper. I have recently taken interest in this small enclave of businesses where one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. If you’ve ever spoken to someone who often frequents a thrift store, the hunt is infectious. I recently had the pleasure of spending some time in a few of Los Angeles’ thrift shops with one of these high-energy individuals. I was floored on what valuables people are so quick to part with. The items that I found absolutely no interest in and would too have thrown in the garbage are—believe it or not—highly valuable.

The Beit T’Shuvah Thrift Stores are the most important to me—they feed into a mission that I care deeply about. The concept of business is subtle, the idea is a mission and the mission is saving souls. The profits go to the cost of care at Beit T’Shuvah, so that those who cannot afford a bed can have a chance to live sober lives. There is not a better cause out there and there’s not another Thrift Store with a more defined mission. The staff is clear of why they are working and who they are working for, heck, most of the staff were once residents.  You are greeted when you walk through the front door with unbelievable customer service.  Everyone who walks in is of the utmost importance—everyone matters.  As I think about it, it really is quite the operation, they will come pick up your donations, pack them, figure out an incredibly reasonable price, and then distribute them to the thrift shop. It is an arduous process.

There is absolutely no question that I will be more thrifty in thinking and in action. When I have belongings that need to go…they need to go to the thrift store. And I urge you to do the same. Donate. Just pick up the phone and call 310 204 4669, they will do the rest.

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