Shaping Character, Serving Customers
Thrift store volunteer Gino says, “We are not just selling stuff to roll it up into our pockets for a profit. These men are our future. How we help, these men will shape the character of tomorrow. I’m all for it.”
Gino understands the place he volunteers and ‘gets’ the vision of Central Coast Super Thrift. Gino continues, “I think this is where the rubber meets the road and you are really helping someone. You are giving yourself to the community and where it hurts most. I speak to some of the program men here and even with their parents. I spoke to one of the fathers about giving his son a blessing, giving his time to his son because they are never too far-gone, and parents never too old. That is part of why I’m here. I’m here to speak to the program men about getting what they want in life and mentor them. I get blessed and they get blessed too. To see them thrive is a joy.”
Make no mistake; Gino blesses everyone at the store and not just the program men. He states, “I do all of it. I’ll do the men’s clothing, the women’s clothing, whatever it takes. The most enjoyable thing is people and helping them as customers.”
For Gino, this vision began as a customer himself. Gino recalls, “My sister and I would visit all the thrift stores in town and we would wind up here. The atmosphere was just right, so I would come and shop. Then after a while, I noticed that they needed help. So I started pitching in. It wasn’t going to hurt me. Being retired, I have all the free time in the world.”
Calling all volunteers, Gino says, “I encourage them to come and spend some time. Learn who the people are and what the mission is. Word of mouth is fire. It spreads. We need to roll that fire so that everyone hears and they come here with the purpose of helping.”
Today, would you consider volunteering at the thrift store where character is shaped and customers are served?
2017 is in full swing and we could not be more excited here at Central Coast Rescue Mission. The men in our Life Recovery Program are finding refuge, which is leading them in their recovery and ultimately to the restoration of their lives and families. Their efforts are helping to feed our community through our Wednesday morning food pantry and our Thursday evening Familia De La Noche events. We are honored to serve the City of Santa Maria in all that we do!
The men graduating our Life Recovery Program grew over 50% from last year. With many of our new graduates choosing to stay at the mission, helping the next generation of men, exciting new doors are opening to us. This year we are launching a new Leadership Life Skills Development track that will give us the ability to build into our graduates like never before. Men will have the opportunity to go back to school, find solid vocational training, learn life skills that will impact our community, and develop communication skills that will revolutionize their relationships. 2017 is going to be an amazing year of growth!