The exterior purple trim is peeling away, lettering above the door is falling off and people driving down Berry street see an empty space through the store’s windows.
But with a fresh coat of cool grey paint, wood floors and an open floor plan, the interior shows the beginnings of a renovation for Berry Good Buys.
Berry Good Buys is the donation center and a source of revenue for SafeHaven domestic violence shelters that received a $100,000 grant from the Amon G. Carter Foundation.
Since the locations of the SafeHaven shelters are undisclosed in order to protect the people staying in them, people can drop off their donations at Berry Good Buys instead.
Items that are immediately needed are taken to the shelters, and everything else is sold in the store.
“This agency is the only Tarrant County provider addressing the full scope of victims’ needs,” wrote John Robinson, the executive vice president of the Amon G. Carter Foundation in his proposal to the board. “Addressing building needs at the resale store is long overdue and I recommend we approve their $100,000 request.”
The money is being used for a new layout, exterior siding, signage, flooring and air conditioning, said Keeli McNair, the director of marketing and communications at SafeHaven.
“These upgrades will provide the store with improved visibility in the community, lower maintenance and energy costs, and an upgraded appearance and atmosphere for shoppers, volunteers, and staff,” McNair said.
McNair said that the store is “an essential source of revenue, donations and community visibility,” and provides over half a million dollars to SafeHaven every year.
Berry Good Buys began renting a front room space on Berry Street in 1988, when the building housed multiple businesses.
“It’s time for a major makeover,” said Julie Perhacs, who has been working with SafeHaven since early 1988 before the store was open. “It means a lot.”
With Fort Worth’s plans to upgrade the surrounding neighborhood through the Berry Street initiative, Perhacs said she hopes the new design will help draw in customers.
Before the grant, most of the upkeep was done by the people who work there.
“We did what we could do ourselves with volunteer projects,” said Danna Wall, who has been with SafeHaven for 23 years.
While the store is being renovated, Wall, Perhacs and others are organizing the inventory being stored in the parking lot.
In case you’re wondering what BGB staff has been up to during this remodel, yes, we’re still working.
The Berry Good Buys location has resumed accepting donations, after a temporary hiatus during the construction period. The ribbon ceremony for the re-opening of Berry Good Buys will be hosted by the Chamber of Commerce at 10:30 a.m. on April 26.
Ali Montag is a managing editor for TCU 360. She has previously worked at CNBC in New York and is headed back to work at Bloomberg next summer. In person, she only talks about her hometown of Austin and her cat named Louis Vuitton.