Donor's New Upper West Side Store Benefits Children’s Aid in More Ways Than One
Store trains youth, employs 14 teens
A Time for Children is the name of a very special new children’s gift and accessory store on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. While its unique merchandise alone would set it apart from other retailers, the store has a special mission: 100% of the net profits from ‘A Time for Children’ are donated to The Children’s Aid Society! Equally important, the store trains youth from several Children’s Aid programs in the many aspects of retailing, and employs 14 teens.
Teens from several Children’s Aid centers – Frederick Douglass, Milbank and Hope Academy – work in the beautiful, airy store in shifts, waiting on customers, stocking the shelves, learning the POS system as well as all the ins and outs of sales and merchandising. On a recent visit, two Milbank teens, Stanley, 19, and Samantha, 17, were working in the store. Samantha, a high school senior, said that working in the store was “fantastic, lots of fun,” and that she’s “learning how to deal with people.” Her objective is a career in business. Stanley, a college sophomore, called it a “great experience.”
The store is sponsored by Big Wood, a foundation supported by Michael and Margie Stern. Their generous donation of the store’s proceeds to Children’s Aid will support the agency’s youth development services. Their gracious use of the store as a laboratory for teen training puts this shop in quite a different place than any other retail operation in the city. A Time for Children is located at 506 Amsterdam Avenue, New York City, 212-580-8202.