MONTICELLO, Ill. (WCIA) — Willow Tree Missions is the sole source of help for domestic violence victims in Piatt County. Now, they have a new resale store to support them.
They held the grand opening at 100 East Washington Street on Wednesday. All of the money made at the store goes back into their mission of helping victims become independent. Leaders in the organization said they couldn’t have done it without donations and its more than 1,300 volunteers.
“There is hope through prevention, and services to help folks protect their kids and protect the young adults,” Executive Director Jill Maxey said.
Like the assistance the organization gives, the shop was a community effort.
“It’s just hard to see how it could be even better. I know that they’re working to do more services for people, and a successful store helps them fund that,” Founding Board Member Suzanne Wells said.
Donations helped pay for the store and keep the racks full. Volunteers spent their time turning the empty building into a source of continued support.
“This is a pretty unique venture. They’re kind of a do-it-yourself group,” Wells said.
Wells started the organization in 2007.
“A number of people got together, principally in Cisco, and kind of came up with the idea. And then we had a space that was donated,” she said.
She said they were selling items for as low as they could just to get something. Seeing what it has become is much more than she envisioned.
“It has become a resource for just a million levels of good in our community. It takes a lot of work to do that, and we all benefit from it,” Wells said.
Once they are finished remodeling, the building will serve as housing for domestic violence victims. It is expected to be done next year. Families will be able to stay for up to two years.
Store hours for both the new shop and the 351 West Monroe Street resale shop are Monday through Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.