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A decade of 'Good Samaritan'

by BILL BULEY
Staff Writer | April 2, 2024 1:08 AM

COEUR d’ALENE — The impact of the Good Samaritan Thrift Store can be found in the lives of those it has helped.

But after 10 years, numbers tell a pretty good story, too.

“I just believe God expands and increases what we do,” said Nancy Cafferty, store manager.

The boutique-like shop at Fifth Street and Lakeside Avenue marked its 10th anniversary on a sunny Monday with discounts, prizes and refreshments. There was a light, joyous atmosphere as customers circulated and staff wore shirts that read, “God is Faithful.”

David Doughty, a regular visitor, said he likes the spirit, the staff and the cause. Proceeds go toward the Good Samaritan Rehabilitation program operated by The Altar Church in Coeur d’Alene. 

“What they do with the money is a great help to the people in need,” he said.

In a decade, the Good Samaritan Thrift Store has produced $1.75 million in sales and received $32,600 in donations. It has provided financial support for 50 people to go through the rehabilitation program, a nonprofit dedicated to helping men and women overcome substance abuse and addictions.

It has generated $300,000 for the program, with funds covering operational costs.

It survived a 2016 fire at its old location on Fourth Street that destroyed the store and donations, but it found a new home.

Cafferty said she and some of the eight part-time staff members have had family go through Good Samaritan Rehabilitation. They have seen and felt its impact in uniting families and giving people a second chance at life.

She said she is “incredibly honored” to manage the thrift store, which she said receives strong community support. It’s not just a place selling used stuff, but one where people can get encouragement, prayers and even a meal.

“We really love our people that come in the door,” Cafferty said.

Stacy Dudley went through the Good Samaritan program in 2017 and has worked at the thrift store since. She said it kept her rooted in her faith.

“It has totally changed my life,” she said.

Even better, Dudley said, is how they've been able to lend a hand to so many people.

"It's a blessing for us," she said.

Pastor Tim Remington of The Altar Church stopped by during Monday’s anniversary celebration. He admits he wasn’t wild about opening a thrift store when approached with the idea 10 years ago, but he agreed to try it.

He’s glad he did. 

Remington said Good Samaritan Rehabilitation, now in its 21st year, recently marked the 4,000th person that has completed its program. The result is people who have found a new hope in life and left the darkness behind.

“This thrift store has been a huge ministry. Not just for Good Samaritan, but the whole downtown,” he said.


    Stacy Dudley helps customers at the Good Samaritan Thrift Store on Monday.
 
 
    David Doughty walks into the Good Samaritan Thrift Store on Monday for its 10th anniversary celebration.
 
 


    Store Manager Nancy Cafferty and Pastor Tim Remington look over an item for sale at the Good Samaritan Thrift Store on Monday.