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Habitat for Humanity Restore worries it may not survive outbreak without community help

Habitat for Humanity Restore
Katie Counts turns on the lights at the Habitat for Humanity Restore in Pocatello.

POCATELLO, Idaho (KIFI/KIDK) - The Habitat for Humanity Restore closed its doors on Tuesday in an effort to stop the spread of coronavirus.

The store will remain closed for two weeks and the situation will be re-evaluated on March 30, according to manager Katie Counts.

As a nonprofit, Counts is concerned about what will happen to the store without two weeks of income.

"Every penny counts and it really does in this situation," she said. "Every last penny counts."

Unlike some other businesses, the Restore doesn't have any real savings to lean on.

"We don’t have any funds available for emergency situations," Counts said. "We make sure everything that is above overhead goes directly back into the community."

The decision to close was difficult, but Counts said it was the right move with both high-risk workers and customers.

Now, the store is asking that those in the community donate if they can.

"Our board has been very gracious and has helped the employees by continuing payroll - payroll, rent, utilities, all those still need to be getting paid - and so those donations are going to help continue what we’re doing and ensure that when we reopen we're able to continue building."

Counts estimates the store needs approximately $6,500 to stay afloat. She worries a permanent closure would be devastating to the community, especially in the case of an economic recession.

"Nobody thinks about, ‘Oh, I need a new bed or I need a new couch when times are tough,' but it happens and we are going to be key to rebuilding that and our build projects are going to be key. This community really, really needs our help and we want to continue to be able to provide that help."

The Restore will continue to accept drop off donations during the closure.

Business Watch / Coronavirus Coverage / Economy / Idaho / Local News / Money / Pocatello / Regional News / Top Stories
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Max Cohan

Max is a reporter for Local News 8 and KIDK Eyewitness News 3.


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