ReStore has a new manager

By Carol Larson | Jun 15, 2013

 

Michelle Smith is thrilled with her new job as manager of the Haywood Habitat ReStore in Waynesville, replacing retiring manager Gary Clontz.

“I love retail work and fundraising,” said Smith, “and this job is a perfect fit for me.”

Smith spent four years in the Coast Guard before moving to Haywood County in 1998 and training to be a police officer with the Asheville Police Department.

She served as an officer in Maggie Valley and for the town of Lake Lure, working retail jobs on the side. In 2010 she was hired as the general manager of the restaurant, bar and retail shops in the newly-renovated Asheville Airport, a position she held until beginning with Habitat.

Habitat’s Waynesville ReStore marked its second anniversary in April. Both years the store has met its goal to raise enough funds with net proceeds to finance a Habitat house for a family in need. The goal for the coming year is to increase sales an additional 10 percent. Not one to back away from a challenge, Smith said, “The new goal is OK. We can make it happen.”

Aside from community donations that fill the store, a major part of the ReStore’s success is its volunteers. And, as the business continues to grow, volunteer staffing remains a challenge.

“I’d like to see a mix of all ages of volunteers get involved here,” said Smith. “It’s a great place for younger folks who are technologically savvy and retired volunteers with other skills and talents to come together and learn from each other.”

For instance, she recently talked about seeing an older volunteer teaching a teenage volunteer how to rewire a fan.

Opportunities are available for anyone interested in donating time to help out in the store. “We need people with a variety of skills, interests and available schedules,” said Smith.  “With the store open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday, volunteers can work hours that fit their schedule. Whether you can work for a couple of hours, or can come in for an entire day, we’re glad to have you.”

 

Types of assistance and skills needed include the following:

  • Displaying and arranging store merchandise
  • Pricing merchandise for sale, which sometimes involves research to determine value
  • Making donation pickups with the ReStore truck
  • Electrical testing and small appliance repairs
  • Restoring/repairing furniture
  • Customer assistance: answering questions, retail checkout, help loading purchases in vehicles

The Habitat ReStore is located at 95 Montgomery Street, across from the Sweet Onion Restaurant.

 

To learn more about Haywood Habitat and the ReStore go to www.haywoodhabitat.org or contact the ReStore Wednesday through Saturday by calling 246-9135.

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