Shoppers at Family Christian might notice some changes in the northwest Fresno store as the national nonprofit retailer emerges from bankruptcy with a stronger mission.
The organization, based in Grand Rapids, Mich., sells Christian-themed merchandise like books, videos, music, jewelry, clothing and more. Its earnings are donated to ministries around the world serving families, orphans and widows in distress.
The Fresno store, 3072 W. Shaw Ave. near Stein Mart, opened in June 2000. It currently employs 29 people, said Steve Biondo, senior vice president.
Family Christian came out of bankruptcy in August and has spent the last several months reorganizing. The result is new products, better customer service, an enhanced digital shopping experience and a deeper focus on its ministry, he said.
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“You’ll see a much more elegant gift section, jewelry section and home decor,” Biondo said.
Think high quality with subtle messages of inspiration like a bracelet with the word “hope” or a scarf with the letter “J” for Jesus on a corner. The store also has a small area with gifts whose proceeds are directed to specific causes like clean water.
For example, the MudLove bracelet is handcrafted with an elastic band and a small clay piece that reads “be the change.” The money from the bracelets go to support clean water programs in Third World nations, Biondo said.
Now in the Fresno store, some proceeds from purchases will go to eradicate famine in Guatemala. And this Christmas, shoppers can help children in the Fresno community by purchasing a Barnabas Bear for $5. Buyers can give the bear to a child or leave it at the store to be given to a Fresno charity.
“When you come into our stores we want you to feel loved and cared for,” Biondo said. “We want you to feel special and help you meet your needs.”
Family Christian Stores
Wine Press Shopping Center
3072 W. Shaw Ave., Fresno