The opening of Our Sisters’ Closet in April of 2007 was the result of a dream that our CEO, Jan Peery, had for providing additional income to the YWCA and its services for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. After months of planning it was determined that OSC was not going to be typical thrift store. There were three important components that we focused on. We wanted a “dignified” shopping environment for our clients. This was important because our clients had had their dignity taken away from them by their abuser. We wanted a boutique atmosphere where clients shopped for free and felt that they weren’t getting garage sale leftovers. Creating a clean welcoming environment for the public shoppers was a high priority and component number two. We focused on customer service, lovely décor and presentation and building a bond. During our customer interactions we made sure that they were aware of our mission and our agencies services. This bond has been what separates us from larger donation centers/thrift stores. Our Sisters’ Closet has created awareness of the YWCA services within the community and given life saving information to many women who have come through our doors. The third goal was to provide a source of ongoing revenue for the many services the YWCA provides. We rely on the public to shop and donate. Merchandise is carefully selected to be placed in the store and the remaining donations that don’t meet our standards are sold to professional recyclers. Every dollar spent at Our Sisters’ Closet helps to make a difference in the lives of women and their children escaping violence in their homes. Another aspect that makes us unique and valuable to the community is that OSC keeps approximately 4 tons per month of unusable items out of the landfills. We are very “well rounded” in our purpose. We meet our client’s needs at no charge, we offer the community a beautiful shopping experience at bargain prices, we provide life saving information, we are a source of revenue to our agency and we are socially responsible by recycling.