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Thrift store, housing nonprofit replaces building, changes name | News

The local group running a thrift store for many years and supporting construction of affordable homes is making significant changes, but much will remain the same, said Luella Maine, the store manager.

“We are the same people, we just have a different name,” Maine said last week at the former Habitat for Humanity thrift store at 223 Second Ave. SE.

The group has switched its affiliation to a different organization, the international nonprofit The Fuller Center for Housing, that better suits the Quincy operation, local representatives said. The local group’s new name is Quincy Valley Thrift Store – The Fuller Center for Housing.

The organization is also nearing the home stretch of a pivotal project to replace its aged store with a spacious, modern structure. The new store’s interior has yet to be finished. But, Bob Buys, a longtime member of the board who is leading the building project, said it could be ready as soon as Aug. 15.

“It’s been amazing,” Buys said.

Buys has been instrumental, said Ulises Infante, president of the board. Infante also serves as a volunteer associate pastor and is running for public office.

The previous store space consisted of two old houses joined together but not connected to the newer storage building in front. Floors were uneven. Repairs became an issue. So, the board decided about a year ago to build a new store, Buys said.

“That decision was based on an evaluation of the building. It didn’t meet code in many ways,” Maine said.

With the pandemic slowing everything down, the thinking was it was a good time, while making the switch to Fuller, to get the new building done and then emerge with the new name and new store.

The local group tore down the houses in winter to make way for

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