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Fresh Start Furniture Bank, Inc.

 34 Tower Street, Unit E
 Hudson, MA 01749
[P] (508) 485-2080
[F] --
http://www.FreshStartFurnitureBank.org/
[email protected]
Geoffrey Schultz
Facebook
INCORPORATED: 2014
 Printable Profile (Summary / Full)
EIN 46-2512827

LAST UPDATED: 05/17/2017
Organization DBA --
Former Names Touchstone Furniture Depot (2015)
Organization received a competitive grant from the Boston Foundation in the past five years No

Summary

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Mission StatementMORE »

Fresh Start Furniture Bank helps restore hope, dignity, and stability in the communities that we serve by recycling donated furniture and housewares to people in need. We accept donations of gently used household items and distribute them free of charge.

Mission Statement

Fresh Start Furniture Bank helps restore hope, dignity, and stability in the communities that we serve by recycling donated furniture and housewares to people in need. We accept donations of gently used household items and distribute them free of charge.

FinancialsMORE »

Fiscal Year Jan 01, 2017 to Dec 31, 2017
Projected Income $40,000.00
Projected Expense $35,000.00

ProgramsMORE »

  • Recycled Furniture and Home Goods Distribution

Revenue vs. Expense ($000s)

Expense Breakdown 2015 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2014 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2013 (%)

For more details regarding the organization's financial information, select the financial tab and review available comments.


Overview

Mission Statement

Fresh Start Furniture Bank helps restore hope, dignity, and stability in the communities that we serve by recycling donated furniture and housewares to people in need. We accept donations of gently used household items and distribute them free of charge.

Background Statement

Fresh Start Furniture Bank began as Touchstone Furniture Depot in 2013 when another group who was running a quasi-furniture bank closed their doors. Susan Waudby joined as the director soon after. With her process flow experience, she made significant improvements to all facets of the operation, instituted a set of consistent policies, built consensus with the volunteer group, and significantly raised the quality of the donated items. Geoff Schultz, an experienced technology entrepreneur, took the role of IT director and implemented a comprehensive set of information systems to integrate the entire operation. He then became president, obtained 501(c)(3) status and began raising funds. We also changed our name to Fresh Start Furniture Bank to better reflect our mission.

We quickly were able to buy a used box truck, which massively increased the amount of furniture that we could collect. We quickly out grew our donated space and moved to a 5000 sq ft facility in Hudson, MA. Fresh Start's growth rate has been amazing. We furnished 180 household in 2014; 257 households in 2015 and 328 households in 2016.

Fresh Start is 100% volunteer based. As of May, 2017 we have 117 volunteers who make the operation work. We're open 3 days a week and require 10-15 people per day.


Impact Statement

  • In 2016 Fresh Start furnished 328 families (916 people) with 8244 pieces of furniture and home goods.
  • In 2017 we expect to furnish 420 households with over 12,000 items.
  • There are now 220 social service agencies in 57 cities and towns referring their clients to us
  • We are 100% volunteer based
  • As of May, 2017 we now have 117 volunteers making this operation work.
  • Last year our volunteers put in over 5,000 hours of time
  • We have an incredible IT infrastructure which allows us to easily manage all of the volunteers and clients
  • We have a ~5000 sq ft distribution center

Needs Statement

Our major needs are as follows:
  • We need to hire a part time volunteer coordinator.  
  • Our growth rate is 20-25% per year.  Soon our existing 5000 sq ft of space will be insufficient.  An additional 5000 sq st is available next door at $5/ft 

CEO Statement

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Board Chair Statement

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Geographic Area Served

METROWEST REGION, MA
CENTRAL REGION, MA
GREATER BOSTON REGION, MA
The majority of the clients that we serve come from the Metrowest & Worcester county areas, but we regularly receive referrals from the greater Boston area, North shore, South shore and Western MA.

Organization Categories

  1. Human Services - Human Services NEC
  2. Housing, Shelter - Housing & Shelter NEC
  3. -

Independent research has been conducted on this organization's theory of change or on the effectiveness of this organization's program(s)

No

Programs

Recycled Furniture and Home Goods Distribution

The Furniture and Home Goods Distribution program is the sole program offered by Fresh Start. It provides free recycled furniture and home goods to people in need. These are people coming out of shelters, domestic abuse situations, recent immigrants, veterans and people recovering from addiction or mental issues. Social service agencies throughout MA submit electronic referrals for their clients to Fresh Start. 

Clients are only allowed a single referral, unless a major event occurs. They have 30 days with a maximum of 3 visits to select their items. Quantities of furniture and other items are limited based upon family size.

To support all of this there are groups responsible for interacting with donors, scheduling pick ups, collecting donations, inspecting, cleaning and sorting the items as well as running the store.
Budget  $35,000.00
Category  Human Services, General/Other Household Goods Provision
Population Served Poor,Economically Disadvantaged,Indigent Veterans Immigrant, Newcomers, Refugees
Program Short-Term Success  The short term success of our customers is providing them with the basic necessities to form a home and shelter their family. TFD will measure this in clients served and goods distributed. It is truly up to the social service agency and the client to take advantage this gift that they have been given and to stabilize their own situation.
Program Long-Term Success  TFD's interaction with a social service agency's client is very brief within their journey to become a productive citizen who doesn't rely on public aid. Our belief is that by providing some of the basic necessities to provision a home, that the client can restore some of the hope, dignity, and stability that has been lost along the way. We further believe that without this, that many of these clients will simply repeat the cycle of poverty which brought them to our door.

Unfortunately due to the arms length relationship with the social service agencies, we will have no direct metrics by which to measure the client's success, other than the smiles and intense gratitude that we receive daily.
Program Success Monitored By  TFD will measure its own success by statistics showing agencies enrolled, referrals received, customers served, and furniture and goods distributed.
Examples of Program Success  TFD opened its doors in April, 2013 and started enrolling agencies in September, 2013. Since then 71 agencies have enrolled (including 16 in the last month). These agencies referred 266 families to us in the last 12 months and we have distributed over 2400 pieces of furniture and home goods to them.

During this period we have built an extensive infrastructure as well as instituting the policies and procedures necessary to uniformly carry out the tasks which are required to accomplish this.

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments

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Management


CEO/Executive Director Mr. Geoffrey William Schultz
CEO Term Start Nov 2014
CEO Email [email protected]
CEO Experience Geoff is a Michigan State University graduate with a BS in computer science.  He worked for Digital Equipment Corporation as a software engineer for 14 years before founding UltraNet Communications, Inc.  UltraNet grew to be the largest Internet Service Provider in new England before it was sold to RCN.  Geoff was the Sr. VP of Internet Operations before retiring.
Co-CEO --
Co-CEO Term Start --
Co-CEO Email --
Co-CEO Experience --

Former CEOs and Terms

Name Start End
-- -- --

Senior Staff

Name Title Experience/Biography
-- -- --

Awards

Award Awarding Organization Year
-- -- --

Affiliations

Affiliation Year
-- --
Member of state association of nonprofits? No
Name of state association --

External Assessments and Accreditations

External Assessment or Accreditation Year
-- --

Collaborations

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CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments

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Foundation Comments

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Staff Information

Number of Full Time Staff 0
Number of Part Time Staff 0
Number of Volunteers 117
Number of Contract Staff 0
Staff Retention Rate % --

Staff Demographics

Ethnicity African American/Black: 5
Asian American/Pacific Islander: 0
Caucasian: 65
Hispanic/Latino: 20
Native American/American Indian: 0
Other: 10
Other (if specified): Indian
Gender Female: 80
Male: 20
Not Specified 0

Plans & Policies

Organization has Fundraising Plan? Under Development
Organization has Strategic Plan? Under Development
Years Strategic Plan Considers --
Management Succession Plan --
Business Continuity of Operations Plan No
Organization Policies And Procedures Under Development
Nondiscrimination Policy Under Development
Whistle Blower Policy No
Document Destruction Policy No
Directors and Officers Insurance Policy --
State Charitable Solicitations Permit Yes
State Registration Yes

Risk Management Provisions

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Reporting and Evaluations

Management Reports to Board? N/A
CEO Formal Evaluation and Frequency N/A N/A
Senior Management Formal Evaluation and Frequency N/A N/A
Non Management Formal Evaluation and Frequency N/A N/A

Governance


Board Chair Mr Branch Yules
Board Chair Company Affiliation Lilien Realty, LLC
Board Chair Term Sept 2013 - Oct 2014
Board Co-Chair --
Board Co-Chair Company Affiliation --
Board Co-Chair Term -

Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
Mr. Brian Poitras Waldorf Capital Management Voting
Mr. Geoffrey William Schultz Retired Voting
Ms. Susan Elaine Waudby Retired Voting
Mr. Branch Yules Lilien Realty, LLC Voting

Constituent Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
-- -- --

Youth Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
-- -- --

Advisory Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
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Board Demographics

Ethnicity African American/Black: 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander: 0
Caucasian: 100
Hispanic/Latino: 0
Native American/American Indian: 0
Other: 0
Other (if specified): 0
Gender Female: 25
Male: 75
Not Specified 0

Board Information

Board Term Lengths 1
Board Term Limits --
Board Meeting Attendance % 100%
Written Board Selection Criteria No
Written Conflict Of Interest Policy Yes
Percentage of Monetary Contributions 50%
Percentage of In-Kind Contributions 100%
Constituency Includes Client Representation No

Standing Committees

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CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments

One of the major challenges that Fresh Start faces is finding qualified individuals to fill in our board. There is much which needs to be done within the Marlborough area and it appears that there is only a small contingent of people who really get things done, and those people are in high demand. We are a fairly young organization, so our name is just getting out there. However, we have made huge strides forward in a relatively short period of time, which is making people sit up and take notice.

At this point in time we really need people with deep connections into the community to assist with PR, fund raising, grant writing and volunteer recruiting. Our current board has many talents and does their best with these tasks, but we know that others are much better skilled at these than we are.

Foundation Comments

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Financials


Revenue vs. Expense ($000s)

Expense Breakdown 2015 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2014 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2013 (%)

Fiscal Year Jan 01, 2017 to Dec 31, 2017
Projected Income $40,000.00
Projected Expense $35,000.00
Form 990s

2015 990-EZ

2014 990-EZ

2013 990-EZ

Audit Documents

2015 Review

IRS Letter of Exemption

IRS Letter of Determination

Prior Three Years Total Revenue and Expense Totals

Fiscal Year 2015 2014 2013
Total Revenue $157,248 $94,868 $27,067
Total Expenses $132,238 $44,588 $22,075

Prior Three Years Revenue Sources

Fiscal Year 2015 2014 2013
Foundation and
Corporation Contributions
-- -- --
Government Contributions $0 $0 $0
    Federal -- -- --
    State -- -- --
    Local -- -- --
    Unspecified -- -- --
Individual Contributions $154,489 $92,791 $26,617
Indirect Public Support -- -- --
Earned Revenue $2,109 $2,077 $450
Investment Income, Net of Losses $6 -- --
Membership Dues -- -- --
Special Events $644 -- --
Revenue In-Kind -- -- --
Other -- -- --

Prior Three Years Expense Allocations

Fiscal Year 2015 2014 2013
Program Expense $105,917 $41,708 $21,022
Administration Expense $26,321 $2,880 $1,053
Fundraising Expense -- -- --
Payments to Affiliates -- -- --
Total Revenue/Total Expenses 1.19 2.13 1.23
Program Expense/Total Expenses 80% 94% 95%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue 0% 0% 0%

Prior Three Years Assets and Liabilities

Fiscal Year 2015 2014 2013
Total Assets $72,102 $55,754 $4,992
Current Assets $37,797 $27,797 $2,307
Long-Term Liabilities $0 $0 $0
Current Liabilities $1,124 $482 $0
Total Net Assets $70,978 $55,272 $4,992

Prior Three Years Top Three Funding Sources

Fiscal Year 2015 2014 2013
1st (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --
2nd (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --
3rd (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --

Financial Planning

Endowment Value --
Spending Policy Income Only
Percentage(If selected) --
Credit Line No
Reserve Fund No
How many months does reserve cover? --

Capital Campaign

Are you currently in a Capital Campaign? No
Capital Campaign Purpose --
Campaign Goal --
Capital Campaign Dates Oct 2014 - Dec 2015
Capital Campaign Raised-to-Date Amount $10,000.00
Capital Campaign Anticipated in Next 5 Years? Yes

Short Term Solvency

Fiscal Year 2015 2014 2013
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities 33.63 57.67 --

Long Term Solvency

Fiscal Year 2015 2014 2013
Long-term Liabilities/Total Assets 0% 0% 0%

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments

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Foundation Comments

Financial summary data in the charts and graphs above is per the organization's IRS Form 990s, with the functional expense breakouts per the Form PCs on file with the state of MA. Contributions from Foundations & Corporations are listed under Individuals when the breakout was not available. Please note, this organization changed its name to
Fresh Start Furniture Bank, Inc., per the FY15 990 file posted above.

Documents


Other Documents

No Other Documents currently available.

Impact

The Impact tab is a section on the Giving Common added in October 2013; as such the majority of nonprofits have not yet had the chance to complete this voluntary section. The purpose of the Impact section is to ask five deceptively simple questions that require reflection and promote communication about what really matters – results. The goal is to encourage strategic thinking about how a nonprofit will achieve its goals. The following Impact questions are being completed by nonprofits slowly, thoughtfully and at the right time for their respective organizations to ensure the most accurate information possible.


1. What is your organization aiming to accomplish?

Fresh Start's primary goal is to provide free furniture and home goods to people who are in need and have been referred to us through a social service agency. The community of people that we serve come from shelters, transitional housing, women and children escaping a domestic violence situation, or are recent immigrants or veterans.
 
The items that we provide helps them restore their hope, dignity and stability by giving them the basic necessities to form a home. Without a place to call home, many of these people will simply repeat events which got them into their cycle of poverty. In cases where a disaster has placed them into the situation of needing help, we can provide some of the basic building blocks to get them back on their feet.

Fresh Start's secondary goal is to reduce the amount of furniture and home goods entering landfills by recycling them into a new home.

Fresh Start's growth rate, or shall I say the demand for services, appears to be on a 25% growth rate per year as more agencies sign up to provide referrals. Our goal, and our internal measurement of success, will be to maintain sufficient stocks of furniture and goods so that we may provide the items that the client needs when they walk through the door.

To achieve these goals we need to:
  • Have a board of directors with sufficient breadth and depth to successfully bring the talent and resources necessary to accomplish our goals
  • Build a sufficiently large core of volunteers to support the collection, sorting and distribution of the goods

2. What are your strategies for making this happen?

To accomplish our goals, Fresh Start is:
  • Carefully recruiting board members who can provide the guidance and community connections which we need.
  • Actively recruit volunteers on a weekly basis using local media and word of mouth

3. What are your organization’s capabilities for doing this?

One of the key strengths of Fresh is its IT infrastructure which forms the backbone for virtually all aspects of the organization. The system basically consists of 2 integrated databases which provide the core for multiple systems.

  • The public side of our web site:
    • Provides information about Fresh Start
    • Allows donors to see what we take and don't take and allows them to request a pick up
    • Provides information to clients (customers) as to how and where they can request a referral
    • Allows agencies to register and submit client referrals

  • The private side of our web site:
    • Controls our highly configurable VoIP phone system
    • Provides a ticketing system for incoming calls to all departments
    • Provides the donations group with a distributed system which allows them to work from anywhere to review calls/e-mails, update the status of a call and schedule a pick up
    • Provides the transport group with a system to schedule transport dates, map and arrange the order of pick ups, e-mail donors and transport team members regarding the schedule, and provide manifests to the transport team.
    • Allows volunteers to schedule themselves via the web or text messages

  • An internal database within the store:
    • Maintains information regarding agencies, clients, volunteers, donors and inventory items
    • Retrieves information from the public web site database so that no client information is retained there
    • Automates e-mail and text messages to clients regarding their referral status and items on hold
    • Generates & e-mails donor receipts
    • Generates a large variety of reports

  • A tablet based app which interface with the internal database to
    • Track client visits & items taken
    • Enforces item limits based upon family size
    • Track donated items

Of equal importance to these systems are the policies and procedures which the store volunteers follow. Sue Waudby is Fresh Start's director and is an ex-auditor for Coopers and Lybrand. As a result she understands the importance of consistent policies and procedures and has regular meetings with the various teams to discuss any changes which may need to be made. These are documented and sent out to the members. Sue also handles training to ensure that new volunteers understand what is expected of them. This leads to a very consistent customer experience and sets a high bar for item quality.


4. How will your organization know if you are making progress?

Our key metric for measuring success will be maintaining inventory levels while handling the expected increase in customer volume. Our database tracks inventory levels, referral rates, incoming donations, etc, allowing us to have a historic view of what has occurred and allows us to put out calls for certain items when inventory levels drop.

5. What have and haven’t you accomplished so far?

When one considers that Fresh Start was formed in mid-2013, it's amazing how much has been accomplished since then.
  • Policies and procedures were developed and documented and volunteers were trained using these. This provides a consistent experience for the volunteers, customers and donors.
  • Major IT systems have been implemented which support the above policies and procedures.
  • Fresh Start incorporated and received its 501(c)(3) status
  • A board of directors was constituted
  • Purchased a box truck
  • Moved from a 1000 sq ft donated space into 5000 sq ft
  • 220 agencies are signed up to provide referrals. 
  • Obtained a $100K grant (spread out over 5 years) from the Cummings Foundation