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Salvation Army Thrift Store is closing its doors in Sooke — 41 Comments

  1. I am currently on Sick leave from work and this store is the only place I can afford right now for all my kids clothes. My father is a senior on a limited income and he two can only afford to get the things he needs from this store. I know there is another store but the reason why Sooke is growing is because of the low cost to live here (rents) there are so many families that depend on this store and others to get the things they need at a low cost. Things they would not be able to afford other wise. We can’t loose this store.. I will help to work hard to keep it here.

  2. The sudden closing of our Sally’s is a real shock and makes one wonder what is really happening behind the scene. I have heard that Tim Horton’s is needing a location and this would be prime real estate for them to put up one of their Burger King owned stores. A Timmy’s in that location would also impact The Stick – our social haven in Sooke. The Retail Operations Manager has not informed Sooke residents WHY this is happening and WHY it is happening in such short order… something fish, methinks!

    • I agree. Landlords are not allowed to raise rents more than 2.5% so the excuse that a huge rent hike is responsible for the SA closure does not hold water. That statement from the Salvation Army headquarters is telling us nothing. It is hard to say what exactly is behind this, but I would not rule out the Salvation Army itself, for what reason I cannot imagine…..maybe small town/not enough profits? But profits are technically not the mandate of the Salvation Army; rather assisting folks who are disadvantaged and being of service in the community. Is there an on-line petition started?

      • Actually I have learned that the 2.5% limit is just for residential renters; commercial landlords have no limitations on how much they can raise the rent.

  3. Very disappointing for the Sooke Community. This will leave a gaping hole in the services available to struggling individuals in this community.

  4. They are closing due to lack of sales and the lease was going up. With the rest of the costs of business in sooke just cannot afford to keep going with little support from the public. Just another business that cannot afford to make it. It is sad.

    • Ah, but the Salvation Army is not supposed to be just about business. It was supposedly a non-profit Christian denomination that used its thrift stores as a way to help the poor through sale of inexpensive items (all donated free of charge!), supply employment, and support the local community.
      If the store makes enough “profit” to support its other programs, so well and good, if not, it must consider the bigger picture in how it supports the local community.
      A few years ago, the SA changed their stores greatly to more resemble Value Village. Prices went up. Many items are now cheaper to buy brand new at the Dollar Store or Fields.
      It may not be practical from a “business” model to continue operating in Sooke, but from a Christian model, they are wanted and needed.

  5. I’m dumbfounded!! I have been shopping there for over 20 years. I love the St Vincent as well but we really need them both. Some of the people who shop there have no options, have no car to get to the Sally Ann in town. Some may use the shop as a way of getting in touch with services offered by the SallyAnn. This seems to me to be a really shortsighted decision.Please reconsider as small communities like ours rely on being able to shop locally.

  6. Too bad, I have shopped there for twenty two years and found many bargains. I think this must be a corporate decision, just as they were responsible for pricing which, considering everything is donated, has skyrocketed, which is too bad because it appears to me it is all greed. I sympathize with the employees…………where are they supposed to find work in Sooke? Likely too late for reconsideration………….this decision SUCKS! So much for progress in Sooke……..Not happening! Too bad they couldn’t just break away from the corporate side of things and operate through the Church like the Salvation Army store in Port Alberni…………their prices are the best I have EVER seen. For instance they use coloured tags for specials, an everyday event……….one colour represents full price, another 25% off, the next one is 50% off and the best one of all is three items for a dollar! Food for thought.

  7. 15 years as a single father of 4 in Sooke,when I got custody of the kids and moved here we had nothing. Beds, sheets and blankets, furniture, plates, cutlery and pots, clothes, toys, bikes, just about all the necessities of life we got at the Sally Ann. Now I visit the computer guy next door with my grandson while his mother shops or we play in the area, my daughter takes along time shopping. I don’t get it, seems an endless stream of customers and good deals to be had and the generosity of fellow citizens who donate what they no longer need, just what are we supposed to do without our local Sally Ann, drive to Langford and shop in the big box stores, sure Walmart and the like have great deals, what about the idea of use, reuse and then donate so others can afford some nice things at reasonable prices. Sad day for our village. Your store has been a fixture for a long time, so many visits, so many broken glasses and lost cutlery and the like that I replaced from there. Seems a bad decision to me.

  8. So sad to hear about this! I have taken my kids here for the sat 5 years that we have been in town. Hard to teach kids the value of a dollar and recycling if these stores do not exist; plus it is the BEST place to find something wacky for a Halloween costume! Sad 🙁

  9. To Whom It May Concern
    The sudden closure of the Sooke Family Thrift Store is extremely shocking
    to us as a family.
    For the past 20 years, we have shopped to buy our clothing, household items
    at prices we can afford and loved the recycling and use of products from one hand to another. This situation is just way too sad and I am worried for
    people on low incomes who rely on buying a winter coat or toys for their children. This just should not be happening in our community of Sooke.
    I just do not understand all the issues here.

  10. I am also disappointed in the closing of this valuable store for Sooke. I really hope that another store reopens with the same service in the community, possibly some local churches could start a thrift store as their outreach program.

  11. this is horrible – I agree with Anne – could they not find another spot – maybe the closed Video to Go spot

    • It’s like a meeting place, connect with friends & neighbours. Our family have benefited so much from this store. We believe in reusing and I think a lot of others in this area do too. Who knows, with enough hue & cry could we change their minds? I remember that’s when Fields was supposed to close down, they re-opened it.

  12. SHAME ON YOU!!! The poor Salvation Army management decision to close the Sooke Salvation Army store will hurt a lot of local residents and the wonderful staff who made our shopping so enjoyable are now unemployed. It does not make any sense to have a Salvation Army store in Langford so close to Walmart, the Canadian Superstore and the Westshore Mall. Also, the Victoria Salvation Army store located next to the Value Village and competing with 5 other charity second hand stores located downtown Victoria. There are other 8 Salvation Army stores located on South of Vancouver Island, which should be closed, but not the one in Sooke. A lot of people living in Sooke are low income and some have no car to have the luxury to shop elsewhere where used clothes are affordable. I hope the unemployed staff of the Sooke Salvation Army will find a better employer to work for, good luck and thank you for your hard work.

  13. Disapointing!
    I am a senior on fixed income and have relied on the Sooke SA for a lot of essentials.