POCATELLO — The St. Vincent de Paul thrift store, 855 S. Second Ave. in Pocatello, is open three days per week with limited hours that began Thursday. The store, which has been closed as a result of the coronavirus pandemic since March 19, will operate on a limited basis Thursdays through Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Initially, donations of clothing and household goods will only be accepted on Fridays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The reopening has been carefully planned with the safety of both employees and customers as the top priority. “We have carefully considered the right course of action, keeping in mind first and foremost the health and safety of our patrons, staff and volunteers,” said Beth Huston, manager of the thrift store. “Please know that we will be limiting the number of customers at a time into the store and asking for other precautionary practices.”
Some of these practices include maintaining social distancing, using hand disinfectant and providing for separation of customers and cashiers through the installation of a sneeze guard. Everyone will be asked to wear a mask while in the store.
The thrift store is an important source of revenue for the local conference of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, which is dedicated to helping the poor of Pocatello and the surrounding communities. Some of the organization’s activities include conducting a weekly food distribution, providing emergency funding to help with rent, utilities, and other basic needs, and issuing store vouchers for clothing and household goods. The store also provides a place for the needy of the community to purchase quality used goods at prices far below what new items would cost.
The Society of St. Vincent de Paul is an international Catholic organization that, according to its mission statement, is dedicated to “building a more just world through personal relationships with and service to people in need.”