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We're Open Indy: Goodwill continues to serve through virus outbreak

Six Goodwill employees injured by bear spray
Posted at 8:21 AM, Mar 29, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-29 08:21:32-04

In a time when we can't all gather around a table, we can still come together as a community. We're Open Indy is a partnership between WRTV and our local restaurants and businesses with one goal: getting them through this tough time. Every day, we will help shine a light on the businesses that make up our community by telling their stories and rallying around those who are keeping the grills going, the hospitals running, and the businesses operating.

INDIANAPOLIS — So you finally got around to clearing some of that clutter and getting that space back from the stuff that you don't use or wear. Donating those items can help so many people in so many ways, but with the current crisis Goodwill of Central and Southern Indiana is asking for your help and patience.

"If you can hold onto things for a little while and bring them back in when things loosen up, that's great. But know if you do drop them off, were going to do our best to protect it and get it inside and processed at a later date," Kent Kramer, president and CEO of Goodwill of Central and Southern Indiana said.

The stores are still accepting your donations while the retail side of the operation is closed, but if you can't wait to purge your items, you can expect a little different flow to that procedure.

"You'll notice there's not an attendant there and that we have a box in each site," kramer said. "There's no face-to-face interaction, but once those donations are dropped off, we will come outside and bring those donations inside and just try to be the best steward we can of what people are giving us."

Goodwill employs more than 3,000 employees, many with employment barriers, and operates 16 high schools and many training services. Without those registers ringing they have had to furlough 2,500 employees and suspend some of their programs. However, their foundation is matching financial donations up to $500,000.

"Goodwill is always blessed with household goods and clothing," Kramer said. "Right now in this time of need, financial donations are very helpful, too. With this matching fund from our foundation board, were able to provide more opportunities to help people."

And the stores can't wait to have shoppers back to pop some tags.

"Goodwill is going to be a wonderful place for people to come in and shop; people that might be a little more budget-conscious," Kramer said. "People are going to be possibly doing interviews and needing clothes and we're just going to be ready for them when it happens," Kramer said.

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