More than 25% of our neighbors in the Richmond area live at or below the poverty level. Even more troubling, the poverty rate for children under 18 is nearly 40%. Both of these numbers are some of the most troubling in the state–the poverty rate across Virginia is 11.2%.
Many people living in poverty include women escaping domestic violence, individuals and families who have been homeless, elderly persons on limited incomes, people with mental and physical disabilities, refugees, youth and adults recovering from substance abuse, victims of natural disasters, and the working poor. More than 100 different partner agencies in our area work with these community members to help them find their pathways to dignity and stability.
When each person or family is ready for their new home, there are many factors they have to consider: rent, health care, schooling for children, employment. That means they often don’t have the time or resources to invest in essential household items such as mattresses, bedding, kitchen tables, kitchen utensils, dressers, and more. These items not only help families function successfully, but they provide a sense of dignity and self-worth. These are vital when families or individuals are overcoming crisis and working toward self sufficiency.
Where do these 100+ partner agencies turn when they have a client in need? The CARITAS Furniture Bank. We are home to the only resource of this kind in Virginia. Each year, we serve between 800 and 1,000 individuals and families. We receive donations of gently-used furniture and household goods from generous community members like you.
We fill our warehouse with these items and create a “showroom.” Here, case managers and their clients “shop” for their new home with our volunteers. Case managers only refer clients who have met a set of criteria that demonstrates their need. The amount of items the client receives depends on the size of the household and the availability of items at the Furniture Bank.
When families or individuals are overcoming a crisis, they are vulnerable to experiencing another crisis. Having basic needs met allows them to focus on their challenging road to stability. A good night’s sleep, affordable healthy meals, a place to gather with family are important moments made possible through the Furniture Bank. We know the tangible support we offer changes lives.
- 784 families received items from CARITAS during the 2018-2019 Fiscal Year–that number includes 1,133 adults and 1,113 children.
- 92.86% of our “shoppers” said they felt less concerned about how to get essential items that I need for their new home.
- 94.95% said they felt like their basic household needs were met.
- 10,847 mattresses distributed since 2012 to help men, women and children get a good night’s sleep.
- 38 of our Furniture Bank clients lost their furniture during house fires during the past year. They were referred by the American Red Cross.
Location: 1108 Gordon Avenue, Richmond, VA 23224 | Get Directions
Have a Client Who Needs Furniture?
As a referral partner, you will be able to assist your client with everything from beds and linens to pots and pans and dishes – all in one easy stop! To apply to become a partner, contact Sandra Morris, the Furniture Bank Program Manager, at (804) 887- 1591 or firstname.lastname@example.org.