The new store replaces another thrift store that closed last year.
Hillcrest filled one of its empty storefronts on Thursday with a Father Joe's Villages thrift store, and a queue of shoppers eager to get their hands on some slightly used merchandise lined the sidewalk of University Avenue.
The store will help the homeless population by raising funds for programs and services dedicated to that community.
President and CEO of Father Joe’s Villages, Deacon Jim Vargas, said, “This store is part of our mission to end homelessness one life at a time. that’s what we do each and every single day."
This is only a part of the non-profit's efforts to revitalize their charity retail spaces; they just renovated stores in Imperial Beach and El Cajon according to the San Diego Union-Tribune.
The Hillcrest extension replaces another charity shop; the Baras Foundation Thrift Store, which shuttered last summer. Some neighbors complained about the unkempt conditions of Baras due to a surplus of donations that piled up on the property.
District 3 City Councilman Chris Ward helped cut the ceremonial red ribbon before heading into the new facility for some bargain shopping. He was drawn to a $15 metal peacock statue which he purchased for his office.
“It’s not just about homelessness,” Ward said. “It’s about all people in Hillcrest to be able to come in and partake in another great retail opportunity.”
The store, located at 1457 University Avenue, sits approximately a block away from the San Diego LGBT Community Center which offers services and programs for the LGBT community.
In February 2018, The San Diego County Office of Education reported 23,854 students were homeless in San Diego County — a record high and a 4.7 percent increase from 2017,
It's estimated that LGBT youth make up about 40 percent of the homeless population nationwide.