One of Charlottesville’s prominent resale boutiques, Twice Is Nice, is living up to its name this holiday season. The nonprofit is awarding $270,000 in donations to 26 local grantees, an unprecedented figure in the organization’s charitable history.
All of the recipients of this year’s grant funding provide a range of services to seniors in need.
The Charlottesville Area Community Foundation, a group whose mission is to assist groups harmed by “inequitable systems in the region,” also contributed $35,000 to the grant fund.
“We share the vision of Twice Is Nice that all community members, including seniors in need, should have the opportunity to belong, participate, contribute, and thrive,” said the foundation’s donor relations manager Chaquita Venable. “We are delighted to continue our partnership with Twice Is Nice and support numerous local organizations improving senior lives in our communities.”
Twice Is Nice, which describes itself as an “upscale resale boutique,” operates two stores on Preston Avenue that resell donated furniture, clothes, jewelry, housewares and a variety of other discarded goods. Established more than 40 years ago, the boutique has been focused on giving back to the Charlottesville area’s aging population, an “underserved segment of the community,” as operations manager Lori Woolworth told The Daily Progress. In the past decade, Twice Is Nice has donated more than $1.5 million to such nonprofit groups.
“We’re interested in groups that are assisting seniors in one of several ways: food and security, allowing seniors to age safely and gracefully in their homes, health-oriented, and improving quality of life,” Woolworth told The Daily Progress.
The 2023 grantees are all based in Charlottesville and the surrounding counties of Albemarle, Greene, Louisa, Nelson and Fluvanna. The list includes Feeding Greene Inc., Fluvanna Meals on Wheels, Virginia Supportive Housing, Heart and Soul Fitness with Nicole, Charlottesville T’ai Chi Center, We Bring the Music and the Jefferson Area Board for Aging, or JABA.
When Twice Is Nice was founded in 1990, the sole recipient of its seasonal donation was JABA’s Mountainside Senior Living, until that group was purchased by a for-profit company in 2017. In order to continue fulfilling its mission, Twice Is Nice created a grant allowing local nonprofit groups to apply for additional funding.
This year, 37 local not-for-profit organizations applied for funds and the grant committee selected 26 based on the applicants’ work to improve seniors’ “lifestyle choices, access to health care, societal circumstances, and essential health determinants such as discrimination, economic security, education, and housing,” according to the Twice Is Nice statement announcing its 2023 grantees. The grant committee includes Twice Is Nice volunteers, Woolworth and two representatives from the Charlottesville Area Community Foundation, who have guided Twice Is Nice through the grant creation process.
“Our grant has allowed us to give more in donations and connect with more segments that are supporting seniors,” said Woolworth.
Last year, the boutique’s grant giveaway totaled $235,000, which was $100,000 more than organizers had ever contributed before thanks to the double-digit sales growth the stores have seen in the past three years, according to Woolworth. She attributed that growth to Twice Is Nice expanding its mission statement three years ago to include a focus on sustainability as well as a significant increase in donations since the pandemic.
“Thanks to the considerable generosity of our donors and the tireless devotion of staff and volunteers, Twice Is Nice is able to turn secondhand, recycled items into first-rate services delivered by our exceptional grantees,” said Twice Is Nice board President Gordon Walker in the group’s statement.