LOUISVILLE, Ky. — It's been busy in the donation room at the Nearly New Shop since the start of the pandemic.

What You Need To Know

  • Louisville's Nearly New Shop has seen booming donations since the COVID-19 pandemic began

  • Located in the Highlands' Mid City Mall, the thrift store had to close down to catch up on the influx of donations

  • Nearly New donates proceeds to several organizations in the community

Donation room manager, Paula Hanson, said it's in large part because a lot of people used this time at home as a chance to clean out their closets. The store received so many donations at the end of the year that they had to put donation drop-offs on pause for a bit.

"We had to close down for a few weeks just to get caught up," Hanson said.

Too many donations is a good problem for this store, which is run by the National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW). Despite that good news, NCJW President Joyce Bridge said donations don't always translate to sales.

This store, like many, has not been immune to the economic impact of the pandemic.

"With the loan, we were able to prepay rent and things like that," Bridge said.

She said loans helped, and the store is holding its own week-to-week. However, she would like to see things pick up more this year as people will hopefully feel more comfortable shopping in-person once they get the vaccine.

While it is fun to snag vintage pieces, assistant manager Lora Powers said the real joy comes in knowing that proceeds from this store benefit local organizations that serve women and children.

"I've been here a long time, and I can tell you it feels really good to give back to the community," Powers said.

Customer Malenie Williams said that mission to give inspires her to keep shopping there over the years.

"I am all about supporting people who need the support," Williams said.

When customers, like Williams, check out at the register, they are handed a pamphlet explaining what their purchase helped support. The Nearly New Shop donates proceeds to the following organizations:

With support from both new and seasoned customers, employees at the Nearly New Shop hope this thrift store thrives in 2021, so it can continue giving back to the community. The Nearly New Shop is located in the Mid City Mall in the Highlands.