A Sonoma County group that supplies food and services to those experiencing homelessness or suffering from severe illnesses has announced the closing of its gift shop in Sebastopol.
Founded in 1988 as a response to the AIDS epidemic, nonprofit Food for Thought announced Wednesday that its shop will close on Sept. 14, when the current lease is up.
The organization provides a range of goods and services to people in Sonoma County, including food, vitamins, nutrition counseling and help with organic gardening at little to no cost. Food for Thought is a member of the statewide coalition “Food is Medicine,” which helps low-income Californians with food and nutrition therapy in order to improve their health.
Food for Thought Executive Director Ron Karp, who has served in that capacity since 1996, said that the store was a gift from donor and volunteer Randall Johnson, who left the building to in the group in his will a dozen years ago.
“We are grateful to all of our staff and volunteers, whose efforts with the store have earned us much community goodwill and recognition,” Karp said in a statement released Wednesday.
Serving as a financial support for the Food for Thought food bank, the antique store includes vintage clothing and whimsical decor. An organic garden behind the store showcases garden art and flower pots.
By not renewing its lease on the store, the organization said it will be able to“remain focused on expanding food and nutrition services to Sonoma County residents living with illness.”