Willow Tree Missions 2017 Annual Report
We are very pleased to announce the completion of our first annual report for the public. This report barely scratches the surface on all that our wonderful team has accomplished in 2017. It has been designed to give our team and the public more insight into the mission and how we are helping Piatt County as a whole.
Willow Tree Missions has evolved over the years from a 100% volunteer based model to a paid staff and volunteer model. Today we employ a total of four full-time and six part-time staff. Over the last few years, we have grown from three days a week to six and our sales volume is now 2.5 times what it was just a couple of years ago.
The support we have received from the community has allowed us to grow leaps and bounds internally as an organization and externally to support the needs of the community.
Direct Savings to the Community
We help the community directly by providing gently used items at roughly 10% of retail value. This allows families in the community to stretch their hard-earned dollars farther and use that money on other things such as groceries, gas, utilities, rent, and entertainment for their families. In 2017 we provided an estimated $2.5 million dollars worth of goods to the community for around $217 thousand dollars. This translates into a community savings of roughly $2.25 million dollars. Shop sales also generated over $15K in sales taxes to add to the local and state tax base.
We could not do what we do without our wonderful volunteers. Our volunteers help unload, sort, price, and stock the shop along with tons of other tasks such as cleaning, stuffing envelopes, and providing general labor for the retail shop. Our volunteers in the domestic violence program support victims of domestic violence and their families as advocates, helping fill out orders of protection, legal advocacy, education & prevention services, escape and recovery planning, crisis counseling, and shelter services. For the calendar year of 2017, we logged approximately 18,000 hours of volunteer support.
Other Impacts on the Community
One of the not so obvious impacts of Willow Tree is the work we do with individuals serving community service. We have a great partnership with the court system who regularly refers people to Willow Tree to serve their time. These individuals get to serve their community alongside a team that understands everyone deserves a second chance. Our team is welcoming and supportive of community service workers and we provide guidance and mentoring to those who desire it. As a result, many of these individuals find themselves with a new "family" that they can trust and lean on for direction. Some of them have even gone on to become paid staff of Willow Tree after serving out their community service and proving themselves as valuable team members.