ST. LOUIS, MO (KPLR) - If you`re willing to do the work, you just might find a ton of treasure hidden at the Mers Goodwill Outlet.
“Old Navy name brand clothes,” says Angela Hensley. “I get GI Joe guys for my middle son. He likes to play with them. I can find baseball gloves, hockey equipment, everything I need.”
And Angela Hensley isn`t alone. In only a year after its grand opening, the store has reached $2 million in sales.
“For our first year we've had over 18 million pounds of items that have been sold here or recycled and that's a huge amount that's not going into landfills,” says Dave Kutchback, Chief of Staff for Mers Goodwill.
Every 20 minutes, a new blue bin comes out onto the floor where it stays for four hours. Merchandise sells by the pound for $0.79 or less. From there, it’s moved to the back where it’s sorted, packed, and stacked.
Some of the donated goods will then go to other thrift stores and some overseas.
“We are on track to do over $4.2 million in recycling whether that’s metals or plastics or books or shoes,”says Kutchback.
Not only has this outlet center created 120 jobs that didn’t exist before last year, but it’s recycling material that would have wound up in a landfill. And the money raised helps those with disabilities and economic disadvantages.
“Last year we served over 38,000 people,” says Kutchback. “Our mission is to help people find a job.”
And St. Louisans are finding some bargains in this circle of hope.
“I come for household things. I come for antiques,” says Kathy Rose. “I come for whatever there is.”
“What's your success rate?”asks Patrick Clark.
“Oh, it's great are you kidding?” asks Rose laughing. “There's a whole underground here in Saint Louis.”
You just have to dig in. After all, some finds are worth the weight.
Website: Mers Goodwill Outlet