Holiday Shopping That Helps

The holidays are the perfect time to reflect on all we have, and on doing a bit to help those who don’t have as much.

Consider these 3 thrift shops and emerge with unique gifts – and the knowledge you’ve assisted someone who needed it.

1) Housing Works Thrift Shops (various stores and online)

Discover nearly new and vintage treasures (clothing, accessories, decor) at these shops, which support an important cause:

“Housing Works engages in an array of advocacy strategies to further our mission of ending the twin crises of AIDS and homelessness. Over the past three decades, we’ve learned that any effective plan to address AIDS requires shared commitment: the political will of governments, coordination between health agencies at all levels, and the energy and dedication of AIDS activists, doctors, researchers, service providers, and communities affected by HIV/AIDS. The Housing Works AIDS-FREE Campaign is a collaborative, multi-year initiative committed to ending the AIDS epidemic—in New York State by 2020, in the United States by 2025, and worldwide by 2030. “

2) The Sharing Place Thrift Store (333 East 115th Street)

An over 20-year institution, and voted “Best Thrift Store in NYC”, The Sharing Place

“is an extension of LSA Family and Health Service, a nonprofit that provides food pantry, health, education, and family support services to families in crisis in East Harlem and surrounding communities. Through The Sharing Place, LSA is able to offer free emergency goods to individuals and families in crisis for people living in East Harlem.  In addition, all proceeds from sales at the store support family programs at LSA.”

3) The Thrifty HoG (11 West 25th Street)

An upscale boutique, offering chic vintage clothing and accessories and more, The Thrifty HoG:

“is a unique retail establishment: not only do proceeds benefit the homeless mothers and children supported by HoG, but the shop also provides job-training for these struggling women.

Our goal at Hearts of Gold is simple: Empowerment, Sustainability, Self-Sufficiency and Lots of Love.”


View this post on Instagram


Most moms who become homeless are forced into their situation because of domestic violence, family situations, or a number of other roadblocks. We help moms to break down those barriers and in turn, break the cycle of homelessness for good. Laura is one example of our holistic approach in action. When she came to us at age 19, she had nothing, but her ambition to be better for herself, and her kids fueled her. More than a decade later, Laura is a registered nurse and a thriving member of her NY community. Here is a short video on Laura. To watch the full video, please visit our website. Support moms like Laura by joining us at our All That Glitters Gala on November 7th! Your generous support will provide our Hearts of Gold Fresh Start Package, metro cards, employment training, and a number of other resources that will help them to get back on their feet, permanently. Click link in bio to purchase tickets. #heartsofgold #gala #homeless #nonprofit #homelesswomen #homelesschildren #endhomelessness #bethechange #changelives #impactinglives #homelessness #homelesspeople #breakthecycle #empowerwomen

A post shared by Hearts of Gold (HoG) (@heartsofgoldnyc) on


City Opera Thrift Shop (222 East 23rd Street)

While their charity benefits the arts rather than people-specifically, it bears mentioning, as the art organization (New York City Opera) itself supports a number of outreach programs.

Also: It’s just a walk from Waterside to these stylish vintage and designer fashions!

“New York City Opera was famously dubbed ‘The People’s Opera’ by Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia at its founding in 1943. More than 70 years later, City Opera continues its historic mission to inspire audiences with innovative and theatrically compelling opera, nurture the work of promising American artists, and build new audiences through affordable ticket prices and extensive outreach and education programs.​  Taking inspiration from the vibrant community around it, City Opera celebrates diversity with a new Ópera en Español series and LGBT Initiative, and revitalized outreach and education programs are cultivating and inspiring the next generation of City Opera audiences.”