KERSHAW, S.C. – Following its bi-monthly board meeting on Thursday, September 28, 2023, KARE celebrated the state funding that helped facilitate the purchase of a new location for The Exchange by KARE (The Exchange) with the members of the South Carolina General Assembly who made it possible.
“When we recognized an opportunity to expand our mission in the community by moving The Exchange to a larger, more visible location, we knew that any funds used to purchase the new site would not be available for their intended purpose – to serve our clients in need,” said Angie Neal, KARE’s Executive Director. “When we shared these concerns with our local leaders, Representatives Cody Mitchell, Brandon Newton, and Richie Yow understood the stakes and demonstrated the leadership necessary to secure state assistance. Without their support, KARE simply wouldn’t be as strong as it is today.”
Representatives Mitchell, Newton, and Yow worked together to secure $904,173 in state assistance for KARE to purchase and upfit the Fred’s Pharmacy building at 405 S. Hampton Street in Kershaw, S.C. The Exchange, KARE’s thrift store operations, will move to the new location in early 2024.
KARE is entirely funded by grants, charitable contributions, and revenue generated by The Exchange. The new location will triple the square footage available for the retail operation, which will generate additional revenue to fund the organization’s other services.
The Exchange’s existing location will be repurposed to expand the organization’s food pantry services, creating a food hub for Kershaw, Lancaster, and Chesterfield counties. “From its food pantry to its financial assistance services and thrift store operations, KARE has been serving our neighbors in need for over 40 years,” said Representative Cody Mitchell. “When we were presented with an opportunity to invest in an organization that has a decades-long track record of improving our communities, I knew immediately that it was worthy of our support.”
“KARE has become synonymous with ‘neighbors helping neighbors’ in our part of the state by showing that they’d be there for our people when they were most in need,” said Representative Brandon Newton, a member of the influential Ways and Means Committee. “When I found out they needed our help to enhance and expand their charitable mission in our region without jeopardizing their existing services, it was an easy decision to support their request.”
“I can think of no investment more worthy of my support than one that bolsters an organization dedicated to the kind of charitable work KARE has excelled in,” said Representative Richie Yow. “I look forward to seeing all that KARE will be able to accomplish in this new facility and the resources it will surely generate.”
KARE is a non-profit agency whose mission is to help neighbors in need with practical support through crisis assistance, hunger relief, and resource referrals. KARE has been serving its neighbors for over 40 years now. What started out as a community clothes closet managed by a local church, has now evolved into a tri-county assistance agency dedicated to providing resources that enable its clients to achieve sustaining financial independence.