by Jon Cronin, Staff Writer
With over 860 locations across the United States and 90 internationally, Habitat For Humanity has added Woodside to the list, opening their home improvement retail outlet ReStore.
“The hunger has been here for it,” said Sarah Fox Tracy, a Habitat for Humanity spokesperson.
The store, worked entirely by volunteers with only three paid managers, is located at 62-01 Northern Boulevard.
Tracy noted that all products in the store are donated by landlords, individuals and corporations and priced at 50 to 80 percent off market value.
“All proceeds go to home building,” she said, adding, “most of our home building is in Queens for NYCHA.”
The store has two floors. The first is the retail floor and the second will entertain gathering/training for volunteers and Do-It-Yourself classes for the community.
Tracy noted that the first year of operation will cover the cost of operation and then believes revenue will increase and fund their building projects.
Majorie, a frequent ReStore shopper, from Cambria Heights said, “The furniture here are great deals!”
Tracy added that their retail stores are destinations for “treasure hunters.”
During the store’s opening ceremony, the new Habitat for Humanity CEO Karen Haycox came back to the non-profit after working in Detroit for a year. “When New York City came calling, I couldn’t resist.” She added that this store is “an incredible boon for shoppers,” and that it opened because of Habitat’s focus on building homes in Queens.
Haycox jokingly said of their founder, “I can’t promise President [Jimmy] Carter will shop here but you’ll have to check back everyday.”
Oliver Jones of Brooklyn drove 30 minutes to check the store out. “My wife heard about it this morning on the news,” he said, adding, “I’m surprised and happy to see it. We just bought a house a year ago.”
Satish Maharaj, a Queens Village resident and Habitat volunteer, said, “The store is phenomenal. The prices are low and I’m going to purchase as much as I can to support their cause.”
Frank Hinck, the store’s manager, said they had a soft opening on July 23. He said it gave the staff a good idea of what to expect and the opportunity to educate those on what they are and what they could provide. He noted that the three full-time managers all have construction backgrounds and could aid any customer with questions.
Hinck noted that each staffer takes a day off every quarter to volunteer on Habitat for Humanity sites in the Queens community.
Reach Reporter Jon Cronin at (718) 357-7400 x125, firstname.lastname@example.org or @JonathanSCronin