Thrift Stores History

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The first thrift store opened in May of 2004 in a small room right next to the building where we had our downtown Financial Office in a wealthy neighborhood in Campinas. It was a good location, because there was a park right in front of the building that many people walked by every day.

In 2006, we decided to open another one in the same building of the old Graduate House that we used to rent on Regente Feijo Street. Our Graduate Church was meeting at the top of the Graduate House at that time. The location was not as good as the other thrift store, but we did not have to increase our expenses by renting another building.

After a few years, we saw very good financial progress from our thrift store idea. In 2010, our CEO Philip Smith and our board of directors decided to rent a building on General Osorio Street for a third thrift store. It was a very good place because it was located in a rich neighborhood like the first one, and was also in front of the very popular Hippie Fair Park in Campinas. It was a very successful spot for business, and new customers were coming in and getting to know more about the City of Youth at the time.

But in 2011, in the middle of a rainy night the General Osorio Thrift Store, the ceiling collapsed because there was construction work happening on the building next to it. Fortunately, no one was working when it happened, but we lost a lot of items on that day and had to start over.

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We moved all donated furniture and clothes to our new location on Anchieta Avenue.  Today we have two thrift stores here, one across the street from the other. But at that time, everything looked really different. On one side we started selling small items, and on the other side we simply stored large furniture we could not fit inside the stores.

As time went by, we started to reform Anchieta 599 and it became another very important thrift store. It was now an actual large store with space to hold large items and sell them directly to our clients, along with clothes, jewelry, used construction tools, etc. Slowly it became another very good location because Anchieta Avenue is where the Campinas Municipal Government building is located, as well as many local banks and other stores. This place always has many people walking on the sidewalks, and because we have one thrift store on each side of the avenue, there are many clients who visit our stores. Besides clothes, jewelry and furniture, we also sell food and drinks at a reasonable price on a Food Truck located in front of Anchieta 599 to attract customers.

Simone told me, very proudly, that our thrift stores received an award from Top Model Magazine (local magazine) in 2016. The magazine took votes of general thrift store customers in Campinas, and we were chosen by them for having the best customer relationship and best quality standard for our products among all thrift stores for non-profits in the city.

In 2017 we decided to open another thrift store on General Osorio Street, right next to the land where our old store collapsed in 2011. This store is very meaningful to us. Back in 2017 a group from an American church visited this area, and Philip told them about what had happened in 2011. He also told them that we were looking to rent another building on General Osorio Street because that was such a good area to attract clients. That same week this church group’s leader had preached a beautiful message at our graduate church about an ancient Japanese art form named Kintsugi, which takes broken vases and fills the cracks with gold. What was once considered worthless becomes a priceless work of art. God does the same for us and for our children that come to Hope and leave transformed by Him.

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Café Social

This leader and his team saw the building and decided to help us build a new thrift store there, on the same spot where it collapsed, putting to practice the message they had brought to our church on Sunday morning. However, after talking to the owner of that land, we realized it had already been sold to another company that was going to start rebuilding it. But we found out that the building right next to it was available for renting! So we decided to rent this even larger building and have our thrift store and financial office there.

The message about the Kintsugi art remains until today, because what was once destroyed we were able to come back to the same area and start over on that same street and have a very successful store again, just like in 2010. In front of this store there is a big sign that says “2nd Chance Thrift Store” – A “triple” meaning message that relates FIRST to the second chance that our children receive in life when they arrive at Hope; SECOND to the second chance people give to their items. Instead of throwing them out, they donate and we sell them for a reasonable price to our customers and our ministry benefits from it; THIRD to the second chance we’ve had to build another thrift store on General Osorio Street.

Also, this location has become a “vivid work of art” because we opened our 5th store on May 31 2019, which is a coffee shop right next to our very profitable General Osorio thrift store to increase revenue for our ministry support. It is called Social Coffee Shop (Café Social) and people get to know about Hope when they come in. 100% of our profit from this coffee shop, just like it is with our thrift stores, goes to Hope.

Thrift Stores History

DSC_0059

The first thrift store opened in May of 2004 in a small room right next to the building where we had our downtown Financial Office in a wealthy neighborhood in Campinas. It was a good location, because there was a park right in front of the building that many people walked by every day.

In 2006, we decided to open another one in the same building of the old Graduate House that we used to rent on Regente Feijo Street. Our Graduate Church was meeting at the top of the Graduate House at that time. The location was not as good as the other thrift store, but we did not have to increase our expenses by renting another building.

DSC_0016

After a few years, we saw very good financial progress from our thrift store idea. In 2010, our CEO Philip Smith and our board of directors decided to rent a building on General Osorio Street for a third thrift store. It was a very good place because it was located in a rich neighborhood like the first one, and was also in front of the very popular Hippie Fair Park in Campinas. It was a very successful spot for business, and new customers were coming in and getting to know more about the City of Youth at the time.

But in 2011, in the middle of a rainy night the General Osorio Thrift Store, the ceiling collapsed because there was construction work happening on the building next to it. Fortunately, no one was working when it happened, but we lost a lot of items on that day and had to start over.

DSC_0023

We moved all donated furniture and clothes to our new location on Anchieta Avenue.  Today we have two thrift stores here, one across the street from the other. But at that time, everything looked really different. On one side we started selling small items, and on the other side we simply stored large furniture we could not fit inside the stores.

As time went by, we started to reform Anchieta 599 and it became another very important thrift store. It was now an actual large store with space to hold large items and sell them directly to our clients, along with clothes, jewelry, used construction tools, etc. Slowly it became another very good location because Anchieta Avenue is where the Campinas Municipal Government building is located, as well as many local banks and other stores. This place always has many people walking on the sidewalks, and because we have one thrift store on each side of the avenue, there are many clients who visit our stores. Besides clothes, jewelry and furniture, we also sell food and drinks at a reasonable price on a Food Truck located in front of Anchieta 599 to attract customers.

DSC_0014

Simone told me, very proudly, that our thrift stores received an award from Top Model Magazine (local magazine) in 2016. The magazine took votes of general thrift store customers in Campinas, and we were chosen by them for having the best customer relationship and best quality standard for our products among all thrift stores for non-profits in the city.

In 2017 we decided to open another thrift store on General Osorio Street, right next to the land where our old store collapsed in 2011. This store is very meaningful to us. Back in 2017 a group from an American church visited this area, and Philip told them about what had happened in 2011. He also told them that we were looking to rent another building on General Osorio Street because that was such a good area to attract clients. That same week this church group’s leader had preached a beautiful message at our graduate church about an ancient Japanese art form named Kintsugi, which takes broken vases and fills the cracks with gold. What was once considered worthless becomes a priceless work of art. God does the same for us and for our children that come to Hope and leave transformed by Him.

Café Social

This leader and his team saw the building and decided to help us build a new thrift store there, on the same spot where it collapsed, putting to practice the message they had brought to our church on Sunday morning. However, after talking to the owner of that land, we realized it had already been sold to another company that was going to start rebuilding it. But we found out that the building right next to it was available for renting! So we decided to rent this even larger building and have our thrift store and financial office there.

The message about the Kintsugi art remains until today, because what was once destroyed we were able to come back to the same area and start over on that same street and have a very successful store again, just like in 2010. In front of this store there is a big sign that says “2nd Chance Thrift Store” – A “triple” meaning message that relates FIRST to the second chance that our children receive in life when they arrive at Hope; SECOND to the second chance people give to their items. Instead of throwing them out, they donate and we sell them for a reasonable price to our customers and our ministry benefits from it; THIRD to the second chance we’ve had to build another thrift store on General Osorio Street.

Also, this location has become a “vivid work of art” because we opened our 5th store on May 31 2019, which is a coffee shop right next to our very profitable General Osorio thrift store to increase revenue for our ministry support. It is called Social Coffee Shop (Café Social) and people get to know about Hope when they come in. 100% of our profit from this coffee shop, just like it is with our thrift stores, goes to Hope.