hrift Store can best be summed up with the Bible verse painted on the side of their building: “Do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.” (Hebrews 13:16)
“This is the foundation that we built this ministry on due to the fact that the stuff we get is shared from others,” said Jennifer Ware, who founded the nonprofit in the spring of 2019. “We just do good with it once we get it, by sharing with families that need it.”
Ware opened her first location in Fredericksburg last year in response to a need she saw in her community. The store takes donated items and while they sell some of the items that they receive, they also give some of it to people in need through an in-house voucher program. Ware and her volunteers take the time to sort through the donations to organize them for families to look through.
“People who need items don’t have to do anything but come here and ask for help,” she said.
Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, Ware saw that more people needed help than she realized when she started the business. The pandemic led the amount of donations and people in need of aid at her Fredericksburg location to triple. As a result, Ware has opened a second location on the Spotsylvania side of Lake Anna on Courthouse Road (Route 208).
“It just blew wide open, and it was either close that store and not take donations anymore or expand to another store,” she said. “I didn’t always think we would be doing a second store, but I feel that God’s moving us out to this area for a reason. I think there’s a big need for it [out here].”
The new store is operating with limited hours for the time being. Ware plans a grand opening later this month.
Provisions takes donations of all kinds, from clothing to furniture to household items to electronics and video games. Ware hopes to work with area churches to reach people in need. The Lake Anna location is 2,000 square feet larger than the Fredericksburg store, and Ware hopes to take advantage of the extra space to house larger items. Donations will be divided between the two stores, depending on the space available.
“If we can’t use items at this store, we’ll use them at that one,” she said.
For more information about Provisions Thrift Store, visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/ProvisionThriftStore.