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Hope Haven Ministries opens thrift store

J. H. Osborne • Mar 15, 2019 at 9:44 AM

KINGSPORT — Hope Haven Ministries has opened its first ever thrift store to help generate money to support its year-round work to provide emergency shelter and help the homeless find employment and save subsequent paychecks to get their own homes.

Where and when

The new store, at 900 Lynn Garden Drive, opened last week. But its official grand opening event begins at 10 a.m. today and continues on Saturday. Door prizes and refreshments will be a part of the festivities.

But mostly there will be “great deals, good merchandise, and an opportunity to donate,” Hope Haven Executive Director Joel Trigg said Thursday afternoon.

How

Plans for a thrift store had been kicking around on the back burner for some time, Trigg said, until the ministry’s board of directors agreed to a “trial run” by having a 30-day indoor yard sale. That event proved two things: the community would provide plenty of donated merchandise and the ministry could raise funds.

“We were overwhelmed with donations,” Trigg said. “You name it, it’s here.”

About Hope Haven

Trigg said in the past five years Hope Haven has helped 174 individuals find jobs and also helped 212 individuals get into permanent housing. And those who got jobs, through the 75 percent savings rule, had, in total, saved $197,000.

The ministry’s pre-store revenue stream is dependent on donations from about four dozen area churches, as well as monthly contributions from about 150 individuals, Trigg said. Hope Haven also receives funding from the United Way, and that money is directed to the ministry’s “job search” program, which helps those seeking work to find it. Once they get a job, they’re allowed to remain at Hope Haven for between 90 days and six months. During that period, they are required to save at least 75 percent of their income so that when they leave they will have enough money to pay deposits and other expenses to stand on their own.

• Hope Haven Ministries, Inc. is a Christian, interdenominational, nonprofit ministry that reaches out to homeless men, women and children who may be impoverished economically, educationally, emotionally and/or spiritually.

• The ministry offers emergency shelter — safe, clean, temporary housing for those in distress. There is also a “transient” program that provides a place to stay for those “passing through.” They get a place to sleep and then move on. Another program assists special needs individuals and pregnant women.

• “You have the opportunity here for a new start on life and a place to experience God's love,” according to the ministry’s website.

• Hope Haven is a step along the path of recovery, not a destination.

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