Finding a good home for things you don’t use anymore is a solid move any time of year. Donate items to ECHO’s new thrift store and you will be giving to people in crisis in our community.
ECHO’s mission is to assist residents of Hillsborough County in crisis with emergency food and clothing, offering life-stabilizing programs and resources. ECHO has two resource centers, one in Brandon and one in Riverview. Its Brandon thrift store has provided clothing and housewares for the resource centers since 2021.
A second ECHO Thrift store is opening on Thursday, April 27 on Bloomingdale Avenue. The additional space will allow ECHO to process more donations, support more neighbors in need and create additional funding for ECHO’s many community initiatives.
ECHO Thrift’s manager, Annmarie Macaluso, loves the mission and community focus of ECHO.
“ECHO is community-based. We live here. We work here. We help here,” Macaluso said.
According to Macaluso, the new Bloomingdale store will primarily support the Riverview resource center. The support process will be the same as it has been for the Brandon resource center. Resource centers send invoices of what they need, the thrift stores fill the items and then they are picked up and taken to the centers daily. Leftover items at the thrift stores are sold, and the profits support ECHO’s programming.
Macaluso explained that the new store provides more giveback to what ECHO is already doing but beyond that, it gives back to this area of the community.
“I look at our thrift store as its own give back to the community. We try to keep things here reasonable. People can come and shop and find nice things for their family. A lot of people are struggling who might not need assistance, but things are a little tight and we are more affordable,” Macaluso said.
ECHO’s Bloomingdale thrift store is located at 815 W. Bloomingdale Ave. It is open from 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday. Donation hours are 10 a.m.-2 p.m. on those days.
Donations of clothing and housewares are accepted. Baby seats, large toys and furniture (with the exception of small accent pieces) cannot be donated.
To learn more about ECHO, visit https://echofl.org/. For specific thrift store information, select the “ECHO Thrift” tab on the website.