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Canton thrift shop, food pantry seek volunteers for move

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CANTON — When her agency moves next week, Catherine E. Mathews will depend on muscle power to help carry bags and boxes two blocks down Main Street.

Ms. Mathews, director of Canton’s Church & Community Program, is recruiting volunteers to help carry food, clothing and other items from the third floor at 95 Main St. to the agency’s new home at Main Street and Riverside Drive.

She’s lined up college students, including members of the St. Lawrence University men’s hockey team, but she would like help from other groups and individuals.

Those interested in helping from Feb. 13 to 15 are asked to contact Ms. Mathews in advance at 386-3534 or by email at ccp74@centralny.twcb.com.

“It’s a community effort, and I want to have fun,” Ms. Mathews said. “It’s always fun when you’re helping others. I’ll have doughnuts for the volunteers.”

Staff members from NYSARC have offered to transport the agency’s heavy equipment, such as a refrigerator, desks and filing cabinets. Those items will be moved Monday and Tuesday.

Besides carrying items for the agency’s thrift shop and food pantry, volunteers can help stock shelves in the new building at 7-9 Main St.

The Church & Community Program will be on the building’s left side. The thrift shop will be open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. The food pantry will be open from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. weekdays.

The building’s right side houses the St. Vincent de Paul thrift shop, which opened Monday.

It offers gently used clothing in a variety of sizes for children, men and women. Coats, boots, shoes, scarves, hats, mittens and some household items are also for sale.

Hours at St. Vincent de Paul have been expanded from two and a half days to five days a week, with the thrift shop open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Customers may fill a small bag for $4 and a large bag for $8. The winter clothing that’s on the racks now will be replaced in March with spring and summer clothing.

“Having more hours will help us generate the funds we need to be self-supporting,” said Carolyn W. Shelmidine, manager.

The number of volunteers working at the shop has increased from 10 to 20.

The new building offers large storefront windows that can be decorated for each season and for holidays such as Valentine’s Day next week.

“We’re more accessible and more visible,” Mrs. Shelmidine said.

A drop box for donations to St. Vincent de Paul has been set up behind the building.

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