Switchpoint opens second thrift store in St. George

ST. GEORGE — Switchpoint celebrated the opening of its newest micro-enterprise in St. George Friday afternoon with the ribbon-cutting for the Switchpoint Boutique thrift store.

At the ribbon-cutting for the Switchpoint Boutique Thrift store, St. George, Utah, Feb 26, 2021 | Photo by Mori Kessler, St. George News

The Switchpoint Boutique, located in the shopping center on the corner of 1000 East and Red Hills Parkway, is the second thrift store the Switchpoint Community Resource Center has opened. It is also the latest business the nonprofit has created for the purpose of helping its clients find work, which also creating additional revenue for the nonprofit and its services.

“We’re so excited to have secured this great location,” Carol Hollowell, Switchpoint’s executive director, said prior to the ribbon-cutting.

“Switchpoint thrives on creating new businesses to put a lot of people to work and to give that opportunity,” she said. “I’m so pleased we’re here today to celebrate a second store here in St. George.”

A goal of the Switchpoint Community Resource Center is to help the homeless and in-need become self-sufficient. They do this through a myriad of services offered under one roof at their facility on 1300 West just of Sunset Boulevard in St. George. The facility includes a shelter and food pantry.

Across the street from the main Switchpoint campus is its original thrift store, one of its first “micro-enterprises” that provide jobs and job-training opportunities for clients. Additional enterprises the nonprofit has started include a pet village, a small-engine repair shop, an addition recovery facility, and an incoming childcare facility.

Inside the new Switchpoint Boutique Thrift store, St. George, Utah, Feb 26, 2021 | Photo by Mori Kessler, St. George News

Hollowell called these enterprises “super-critical” for Switchpoint, as they can help steer the nonprofit’s clients toward the empowerment of self-sufficiency versus entitlement. The more skilled and self-sufficient they become, the less they have to rely on Switchpoint’s services to get by.

As well, revenue raised through the micro-enterprises helps fund Switchpoint and its services. This money is also used to match funds brought in through grants. Hollowell also said these funds are “unrestricted,” which means the nonprofit can apply them as it sees fit, rather than have it restricted for specific purposes only, as funds granted through government entities tend to be.

“The more micro-enterprises we create, the more people we can help,” Hollowell said.

The new thrift store, Hollowell added, carries more “high-end” donations and grew out of the mass donations received last year during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Inside the new Switchpoint Boutique Thrift store, St. George, Utah, Feb 26, 2021 | Photo by Mori Kessler, St. George News

Deseret Industries, a large thrift story run by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, was shut down in St. George for several months and couldn’t receive anything. On the other hand, Switchpoint’s own thrift store remained open and was inundated with donations. For a time this necessitated the need for an additional storehouse.

“It’s amazing,” St. George Mayor Michele Randall said of Switchpoint’s new thrift store and how far the nonprofit overall had come since opening in late 2014. “From what we started with – a grand vision – it’s awesome.”

Following the ribbon-cutting, Randall went through the new thrift store with two of her young granddaughters.

For those who would like to help Switchpoint, Hollowell recommend they patronize Switchpoint’s businesses, make donations and volunteer.

Those interested in learning more about the volunteer opportunities Switchpoint offers can visit the community resource center’s website for more information.

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Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2021, all rights reserved.

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