Church Women United: Thriving through community support, scholarships, and volunteerism at Trenton’s shop

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Church Women United is an organization that supports other area organizations.

Church Women United has a thrift shop at 1705 Harris Avenue in Trenton. The organization’s treasurer, Connie Hoffman, says the group’s monthly income comes from purchases made at the thrift shop as well as other donations. This income is then donated back to the community.

Church Women United has been supporting most of the organizations it aids for several years. New organizations interested in receiving donations can speak to any Church Women United Board member.

Hoffman explains that organizations meeting 501(c)(3) criteria can receive support from Church Women United in some form, either through monetary donations or goods from the thrift shop.



Hoffman mentions Jamia Marlay, the organization’s secretary.

Donations to Church Women United can be made at the thrift shop. According to Hoffman, a board member is usually present during shop hours, allowing donors to speak directly to them. The thrift shop’s regular hours are Fridays from noon to 4 p.m. and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The organization incurs several general expenses, including utilities, trash pickup, and other supplies.



The custodian is the only paid staff member at the thrift shop, with all other workers being volunteers.

The Church Women United Thrift Shop in Trenton is set to celebrate its 50th anniversary next year.

Church Women United Treasurer Connie Hoffman reports that the group was organized in May 1972, with meetings dating back to October 1971. The thrift shop opened in May 1974.

Originally located at the northwest corner of Main Street and Crowder Road, the shop moved to its current location at 1705 Harris Avenue in July 2009.

Hoffman says volunteers sort, price, shelve, and sell donated items to the public. The mission of the thrift shop is to provide affordable essentials and other items to the community.

Income from sales is donated to various 501(c)(3) organizations, schools, and groups. Church Women United also offers scholarships.

Church Women United Secretary Jamia Marlay states that item donations are accepted at the thrift shop’s north door from Monday to Saturday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Volunteers do not process items on Sundays.

Donations should be left outside the overhead door, with volunteers sorting through the “Gently Used” items.

Church Women United President Leslie Hixson explains the donation process.



Items that are overly stained or chipped are not put up for sale.

The thrift shop does not accept mattresses, paint, or older TVs, mainly due to difficulty in handling them. Donors are asked to avoid filling black trash bags with clothes and other items as they are hard to move.

Furniture donations are only accepted on Fridays and Saturdays, due to limited storage space. Regular shop hours are Fridays from noon to 4 p.m. and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Marlay says outdoor sales typically start on Fridays and Saturdays at 8 a.m., allowing customers to shop outside items before the store opens. The staff aims to keep prices user-friendly.



Church Women United offers scholarships to local students.

The organization tracks the hours of young volunteers at the thrift shop. Those with 20 hours of service who plan to attend North Central Missouri College are eligible for a scholarship.

President Leslie Hixson praises the contributions of youth volunteers, noting high school students, including homeschoolers, are encouraged to volunteer at the shop.



The organization has offered nursing scholarships since 1974. Hoffman states that students attending NCMC are eligible for these scholarships.

This year, the group awarded four $1,000 nursing scholarships.

Hoffman explains that a Church Women United Board member collaborates with NCMC to review scholarship applications and select recipients.

Church Women United seeks general volunteers with Hixson emphasizing the organization’s openness to community-minded, honest individuals who contribute to a positive environment.



She notes that community church members typically staff the registers on Fridays, while community youth groups do so on Saturdays.

Despite its name, Church Women United welcomes male volunteers as well.

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