Hilton Head Island embraces much of what’s good about a small town. Even as we see our home named America’s favorite vacation island by the travel magazines, year after year, even as we welcome more and more guests from farther and farther around the world, we still bump into folks we’ve known most of our lives almost every day. With those familiar faces come familiar stories, and a common language about how our home got to be this way. The Church Mouse is one of those stories.
Twenty years ago, some “church ladies” at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church on Hilton Head founded The Church Mouse as a ministry to help support non-profit organizations doing good all around the area and the region. Men, too, soon found in The Church Mouse a more personal, local, and accountable version of the thrift store, one that donors, volunteers, and customers alike find to perfectly fit their intentions and needs.
The Church Mouse approach has rung so true for so many, that the amount of money that has been raised from the sale of the items people donate is approaching $3 million. Practically every penny is devoted to helping people, changing lives locally and around the world. Volunteers are the reason we can run so efficiently, and the grace of their effort works wonders.
Homegrown is Different
With everyone telling us that The Church Mouse is different, we tried to put a handle on what makes us that way. The best we could do is to call The Church Mouse a “boutique thrift store.” One way to see that is through the designers and brands that people donate to The Church Mouse, and which shoppers happily find here.
Neiman Marcus, Talbots, Ralph Lauren, Tory Burch, Lilly Pulitzer, Tommy Bahama, and more are among the wearables. Furniture crafted by Henredon and Drexel Heritage is on display. Kitchens and dining rooms graced by Le Creuset, Fitz & Floyd, and Waterford give up their glory to The Church Mouse, as grateful donors pass treasured items on to new homes when the time comes. Jewelry ranging from fun to heirloom is offered here, too. These are not necessarily names you meet so often at a goodwill outlet.
Selected with Care
The charities we support are just as carefully selected as the items donated here for sale. Our annual evaluations of causes to support are conducted fresh each year, and preference goes to applications from organizations located within the community – in Beaufort and Jasper Counties. To spread the Word, we also award grants each year to Christian missions outside the U.S. In both these respects, we differ from a goodwill outlet.
Charitable grants from The Church Mouse are only a part of our story. Volunteers and donors are just as likely to tell you that they prefer The Church Mouse as the happy shoppers here might do. We find it’s a pretty good example of “doing well by doing good.”
You’ll find us on Arrow Road, not far from the Sea Pines Circle, and easily within reach, for visitors and Hilton Head Island residents alike. We look forward to getting acquainted.