The staff and volunteers at Mary & Martha House in Ruskin were very excited to open the doors to Mary & Martha House Fashion and Home Goods last month.

2020 is shaping up to be an exciting year at Ruskin’s Mary & Martha House. The nonprofit organization, which has been helping women and families escape domestic violence and homelessness for 35 years, recently opened the doors to the new Mary & Martha Fashion and Home Goods thrift shop and will be breaking ground on a new shelter this month.

When a woman comes through the doors, Mary & Martha House employees and volunteers work to aid every aspect of their life. Focusing on individualized case management, the organization helps women find their personal barriers and overcome them. Each client receives individual counseling services and support to help set them up for success.

One of the ways that Mary & Martha is able to help its clients is through its thrift shop. Not only are the women able to get real work experience in the store, the profits made go back into the program as well.

The concept of the thrift store is not new, as Mary & Martha House sold items for years at the old location, but when the opportunity of moving to a new building in the heart of Ruskin came up, the board of directors jumped at the chance.

“After all these years, we finally have great exposure to our store that benefits our programs and our clients,” said Executive Director Laurie Herring. “Proceeds made at the store benefit our emergency shelters and transitional housing programs for women and children of domestic violence.”

The new location also has room for offices and a client education center.

Shoppers at the opening of the new location had nothing but great things to say about the store, especially its layout and the easy access to great items.

“They have the nicest staff,” said Doris Brown. “It’s reasonable and fun to shop here.” Laura Ashley was the first guest in the new location. “I think it is completely and totally different from the other store,” she said. “I love Mary & Martha House. They have great prices, great finds and a wonderful cause.”

Donations of clothing and home goods should be dropped off at the store, which is located at 312 S. US Hwy. 41 in Ruskin. To reach the office and the store, call 645-7874.

Hours for the store are Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Saturday, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. and it is closed on Sunday. Visit www.marymarthahouse.org for more information about the organization’s programs.

If you or someone you know is in need of services provided by Mary & Martha House, call the intake line at 641-7027.