Crowds of people came out daily for the Triangle Residential Options for Substance Abusers (TROSA) recent yard sale. People in search of bargains were not disappointed with the abundance of furniture, electronics, clothes and books.
One local shopper, Laura (who did not want her last name used), was impressed with more than just the selection. “They are very organized, structured and neat,” she said.
TROSA usually holds three yard sales per year, but they will have four this year. “The money from the program goes toward housing, food, and clothing,” said staff manager, Mike Lally, of the mens program.
TROSA gets the items from many places. “They are miscellaneous donations that we have throughout the community. We have our moving company when they move customers, they sometimes donate furniture, and we also have an in-kind department which searches out donations in the community and throughout the United States,” said Lally.
But the yard sale benefits TROSA in other ways besides being a fundraiser. “We are able raise money while taking goods that were donated and diverting them from the landfill,” said Jeff Stern, Director of Special Projects. “It’s also a good vocational training for the people in the program.”
Many people working at the yard sale are members of TROSA’s vocational program. “They are recovering from substance abuse and gaining cashier skills, and sale skills,” said Stern.
The items that are not sold will appear at the next yard sale or perhaps in the TROSA thrift shop that is scheduled to open in a few months on Geer Street. “Furniture that does not sell might be given to a TROSA graduate,” Stern added.
TROSA’s next big project is working with the North Carolina State Fair in October. “We do the setup and the cleanup. [It’s] big for us,” said Strern. Even though it is not a TROSA event, TROSA is very involved in it.
TROSA members hope the community will be on the lookout for TROSA’s next big fundraiser event: the Christmas tree sale, which runs from the end of November through the middle of December.
“Last year we had seven lots,” said Stern. “We go to the mountains of North Carolina, and pick up trees, and drive them down, set up lots in and around Durham. We had couple in Chapel Hill.”