Members of VNA’s New Preston thrift store are looking for volunteers


NEW PRESTON — The VNA thrift store on Route 202 is rife with bargains this time of year, offering a collection of gently used and new clothing, shoes, homewares and gifts.

The store’s team of dedicated volunteers appreciate their work, but they need more help to keep the store running.

This week, volunteers Betty Hinckley, Jane Moore, Marilyn Roze and Diane Locke spent their Monday morning sorting through the last batch of donations.

The supply of donations never stops or wavers – there’s always plenty to do for the volunteers, who also serve customers, keep the displays fresh and attractive and the store clean and tidy every day. Ideally, the store has a team of workers who volunteer in pairs. But lately it’s been harder to get people to sign up.

“I sometimes work here on my own,” said Hinckley, who has been a volunteer for almost 20 years. “It’s not easy to do it alone.”

But volunteering at the thrift store is a labor of love for her, Moore, Roze and Locke, who say they can’t wait to be with their friends.

“It’s fun, and we know we’re doing something to help (VNA) patients,” Roze said. “It’s motivating to help people in our community. We all live and work in the cities served by VNA.

The Visiting Nurse & Hospice of Litchfield County thrift store is open Tuesday through Saturday and welcomes regulars and newcomers looking for a deal on a new dress, handbag or pair of earrings, or can – be a bedspread or a set of sheets.

Clothing is presented by size – clothes for women and men in small, medium and large sizes in their own area of ​​the store, accompanied by shoes, sleepwear, jackets and jeans. Children’s clothing is also available, as well as shoes and coats. The store also offers plus-size clothing and handbags, and a boutique at the front offers designer label women’s dresses, jackets, skirts and suits. Most clothes are sold for a few dollars; rack shop items are $5-20.

“We just got a whole collection of brand new swimsuits,” Hinckley said.

Household items, crockery sets, mugs and glassware, small appliances and decoration, seasonal pottery and serving dishes are also sold. There are CDs and cassettes, a few vinyl records; greeting cards; and a selection of books and DVDs. Along the back wall, shoppers can find robes, nightgowns and casual dresses, dress pants, sweatpants, and leggings. Jeans of all sizes are available

Geiger handles marketing and communications for the Visiting Nurse and Litchfield County Hospice in the organization’s Winsted office, and said revenue from the store provides money for nursing services visitors throughout the county, from Canaan to Washington. Foothills VNA, VNA Northwest and Salisbury VNA merged in the mid-2000s.

While the organization’s services are generally covered by Medicare, Medicaid, and many private insurance agencies, financial assistance is available for those who cannot afford it, through the thrift store.

“There are a lot of people who can’t afford the care they need, and we’re providing services to those people,” Geiger said. “The idea that if you volunteer here or shop here means you’re really helping others. Everything harvested here goes towards the care we provide.

The agency provides skilled nursing and palliative care. It has a medical social worker to advocate for patients, helping them navigate the emotional and financial challenges that often accompany a health crisis, Geiger said.

In addition to nursing care, the agency can provide physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and home health aides. Advanced services include wound care, ostomy and incontinence care, disease management, pediatric nursing, maternal and child health care, intravenous therapy, and nutritional counseling.

In the community, Visiting Nurse & Hospice runs flu and blood pressure clinics, balance classes, foot care clinics and bereavement support groups.

Thrift shop volunteers encouraged interested residents to join them. “We have fun here and we have a goal,” Roze said. She and the other team members are retired. “Build new relationships — it’s a great place to work.

To learn more about the thrift store and to volunteer, call 860-379-8561 or visit


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