For nearly 40 years, Seconds Unlimited has made a significant impact on the community both through the goods it sells and for its important financial contribution to Bon Secours Rappahannock General Hospital.
The store’s business model depends on donations of “gently used” clothing and household goods, which are then sold at affordable prices, sometimes ranging as low as $3 to $5 per item. This extremely modest price point of items sold makes it especially remarkable that Seconds Unlimited has recently pledged $500,000 toward The Campaign for Rappahannock General Hospital – to support the first major renovation since the hospital opened in 1977.
“We are so grateful for this tremendous commitment to support the renovation of our community hospital,” said Alan Bailey, RGH Vice-President Administrator. “For more than 44 years, RGH has navigated changes and challenges while continuing to serve the community with compassionate care. As the only hospital in the region, a modern Emergency Department at RGH is vital to the continued health, safety, and peace of mind for this community. The donations, dedicated volunteers and loyal customers at Seconds Unlimited are helping to keep our community healthier and safer for generations to come,” said Bailey.
This significant gift from Seconds Unlimited isn’t the first of its kind for the bustling small thrift shop adjacent to the Tri-Star parking lot. Seconds Unlimited has a long history of donating funds to RGH for projects of all scales that directly benefit patient care. The most recent of these occurred in early 2018, when RGH’s Imaging Department obtained the area’s first 3D mammography unit thanks to the generosity of Seconds Unlimited Thrift Shop and community donations to the RGH Foundation.
“The Foundation and the hospital are so appreciative of the hard work put in by the Seconds Unlimited volunteers, as well as the community,” said Jimmie Carter, member of the RGH Campaign Committee. “It’s remarkable when you think about what a community effort goes into these major gifts from Seconds Unlimited. Every item the community donated to the thrift shop was then resold to other members of the community. One small transaction at a time, these projects and improvements for the hospital are being purchased by the community, for the community.”
According to Seconds Unlimited manager Deborah Hall Silvus, the shop has never been busier with donations pouring in and customers eager to be back out and shopping. “It’s really incredible to see the support from the community, dropping their fantastic items for donation at the back of the shop, and then coming through the front doors to do their own shopping,” said Silvus. “Donations are at an all-time high, we’re freshening up the look of the shop, and we’ve seen an increase in high-end items donated, which in turn enhances the overall quality of the product and setting we’re able to offer,” she said.
Seconds Unlimited closed for almost 6 months in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Upon reopening, the shop offers shortened shopping hours, and operates with a smaller team of volunteers than before. “Of course, we couldn’t do what we do without our dedicated team of volunteers who were so enthusiastic to get back in the shop and continue making a difference for our hospital, for our community,” said Silvus. “We currently have 28 active volunteers generously giving their time and talents to raise these funds to improve the health of our community. I’m so proud to be a part of that.”
“The dedication is just unreal. In fact, three volunteers have each taken leave during the past few months for major surgeries, and all three came hustling back to work as soon as they were cleared,” said Silvus.
“We could always use a few more friendly faces to help out at the shop,” she added. Individuals interested in volunteering can inquire within during business hours. Seconds Unlimited, located at 77 Irvington Road, Kilmarnock, is open Monday-Saturday, 10 am – 2 pm.
To learn more about The Campaign for Rappahannock General Hospital, visit https://www.bsvaf.org/about/rappahannock