Anything you donate to the three area Vintage Values locations will most likely go to help someone unless it is unsafe or unsanitary, said Billie Blackwell, general retail manager of the stores.
“I have personally seen items donated with dirty needles in the pockets, blood stains on sheets and underwear,” she said. “Anything that could potentially ruin other items or be a threat to the people in the back room are carefully removed, quickly. Last week we found a grenade in one of the bags. We did not throw that away. We called the police on that one.
“Years ago, we ran into a situation where The Salvation Army refused to pick up from us because of a donation that was covered with kerosene,” she added. “That, of course, ruined everything around it. We certainly don’t want to cause that kind of problem for anyone. Our relationships with other organizations are extremely important to us. Not only do we work to cultivate new ones, we want to build strong working ties with everyone possible in the community.”
After arriving at Vintage Values, donations go through a processing system to check for tears, stains, bad odors and violent slang, Blackwell said. Items that pass the inspection are hung, steamed and placed on the retail floor for sale, she added.
Vintage Values contacts a variety of other organizations to see if they want items that cannot be used there, Blackwell said. “Our goal is to find homes or recycle as many items as possible,” she added.
Date posted: January 24, 2011
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