TOPEKA, Kan. – (KSNT) God’s Store House Thrift Store started out as the outreach of a church congregation eight years ago. The general manager and son of the owner, Michael Kloos, said the store’s name has become a metaphor for its work in the community.
“It’s really a storehouse,” Kloos said. “Biblically it talks about just having so much that you can’t contain and that’s what we are. The community is so generous to us that sometimes we can’t contain all of our donations.”
Instead of trying to keep all those donations, the non-profit thrift store give items to the people who need them most. Kloos remembers a recent interaction he had with a mom who couldn’t afford to buy a bed.
“She said she and her son had been sleeping for six months on the floor, and that day I knew, I said I have to do something about this.”
Kloos said a mattress was donated to the store that same day. He and an employee personally delivered it to the woman.
“She was just in tears, because they had been on the floor for six months,” he said. “And no one deserves to be in a position like that.”
People in need can fill out applications in the store to ask for donations. Kloos said the staff tries not to turn away anyone with genuine needs.
“We don’t say hey, we can’t help you because of X, Y, Z,” he said. “We try to help everybody to the best of our abilities.”
That includes employees as well. Maren Townsend started working at the store after becoming a single mother. She said the store provided furniture to her family as well as other necessities.
“They have helped with clothing for my children,” Townsend said. “I have six children and so they’ve been able to help me keep them in winter coats and be able to keep them in good shoes. It’s really helped me as a single mom.”
After working there for three years, Townsend said she enjoys helping others who face similar situations as the one she did.
“It’s just really wonderful to give back the way that they were able to give to us,” she said.
God’s Storehouse also donates items to community organizations and institutions, like the YWCA Center for Safety and Empowerment, the Red Cross, Topeka Rescue Mission, Valeo Behavioral Health Care and the Shawnee County Department of Corrections.