The Flaming Vacuum is a funny story we want to share from one of Susie’s Goodwill Adventures:
I go to Goodwill every Thursday for Dollar Day (they know me well). My motivation is to find useful items I then donate to the Welcome to America Project. One item that is asked for by most families is a vacuum cleaner and I have been very lucky to find many $1 vacuums. Rule of thumb: you must always plug them in! Although they may not “suck” very well, if the motor is running smoothly, I can take it apart and fix the “no suck” issue. Lo and behold, one Thursday I found a very nice looking Hoover. I snagged it and took my place in line at the test desk. A very nice lady behind me was waiting to test a lamp. I, of course was bragging about how I can fix these ol’ vacuums etc., and all about my WTAP cause. The lamp lady was lapping it all up. I was the “Mother Teresa” of the Goodwill! I plugged that vacuum in and within a millasecond it made a very odd screeching sound and burst into flames! The lady behind me shrieked “FIRE!” and the Goodwill guys came running. I just pulled the whole electrical strip out of the wall, keeping my hero status in tack. Well, the guys would not let me take the Hoover, insisting that it was unfixable (yes I asked). Sorry WTAP. Everyone walking in to Goodwill asked “what is that smell? Is something on fire?” I loved the way the staff explained that I was getting a vacuum for WTAP and it caught fire. Great publicity!
No vacuum this week, but I did find a girl’s bike, 3 table cloths, 3 sets of sheets, a blanket, bread maker, 3 new-with-tags book bags, and some towels, all for $20!! All of these essential items will be delivered by our wonderful volunteers to the households of newly resettled refugees. It’s a small gesture, but we hope it will make our new neighbors feel welcomed into our communities as they begin the next chapter of the their lives in Phoenix.
Susie Wilkin is a WTAP super-volunteer, Board Member, and dedicated Packer for our Saturday deliveries. Using her own funds, Susie also frequents her local Goodwill on Dollar Days to supplement the donations we receive. She’s always on the hunt for high need items such as vacuums, rice cookers, bikes, and towels.