etc… a thrift store

We praise God and thank our ETC Family for their work on behalf of Highland Christian School.  Since opening, etc has generated over $1,250,000 in support of Highland Christian School! 

These funds are invested in our Foundation fund and directly reduce tuition for parents through the annual gift that is applied to each students’ account.  For the 2021-2022 school year,  this gift will be $365 per student!  This 9% increase is largely due to the good work that etc is doing in building our Foundation Fund principle!

Want to be part of this great work?
is located at the corner of Rte. 30 & Rte. 41 in Schererville, IN.
(1650  U.S.  Route 41, Schererville, IN    46375)

Phone: 219-865-5400

Store Hours:  

  • Monday 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
  • Tuesday 10:00 am – 7:00 pm
  • Wednesday 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
  • Thursday 10:00 am – 7:00 pm
  • Friday 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
  • Saturday 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
  • Sunday – Closed

For more information about the resale shop itself, visit their webpage.  To volunteer, sign up here!

What is etc?

etc’s full name is etc . . . a thrift store.   etc is a resale shop located in the mall on the northwest corner of US 41 (Indianapolis Blvd) and US 30 (Lincoln Highway) in Schererville (across the street from Wal-Mart, between The Dollar Tree and Rent-a-Center). The resale shop was established by the Highland Christian School Foundation as one of its primary fundraising initiatives. The resale shop is currently the only ministry of Servant Partners in Christian Education, Incorporated (SPICE), a non-profit organization created for this purpose and incorporated in the State of Indiana on January 9, 2009. This organization opened the resale shop in April of that same year. On April 22, 2009, the organization was also approved by the IRS as a 501(c)(3) charity. That was important because it means that gifts made to etc are deductible for federal income tax purposes to the full extent of the law.

Why is it called etc?

Our resale shop is called etc for two reasons:   first, etc was picked as an acronym for Educate The Children – a way to reflect its basic purpose of generating income that will be used to train Christian young people to serve their Lord and their world in their callings with greater knowledge and skill – and more effectively. And second, etc is the abbreviation for the Latin words et cetera, which mean  “and other things,” or “and so forth.” etc sells a lot of “other things,” so this phrase is very fitting. The inventory is always changing and never predictable. That unpredictability is what makes shopping at etc exciting and keeps drawing people back to the store.

What kinds of items are sold at etc?

The resale shop receives and resells thousands of donated items – clothing, furniture, toys, books, housewares, knick-knacks, and appliances, to name a few.  A dedicated cadre of volunteers sorts through thousands and thousands of donated items and selects for resale only those that meet certain quality standards. In addition to selling these donated items, the store also purchases and resells jewelry, accessories, and especially furniture. The portion of the store’s floor space devoted to new furniture, in particular, has grown to about 40% of the total.

How does etc Help Highland Christian School?

The profits of the store are donated to the Highland Christian School Foundation to enable it to provide a consistent, long term funding source for the school. The Foundation’s contribution to the school in recent years has amounted to about $350 per student, and this annual gift enables the school to reduce tuition costs by that amount as well. The Foundation Board’s goal is to continue to strengthen and grow the Foundation in order to make future Foundation gifts to the school larger and more reliable. The resale shop was established to provide the Foundation with an important tool to make good on that goal.

Who runs etc?

etc is run by a volunteer Board of Directors appointed by the Foundation Board and ratified by the School Board. This Board has hired three part time managers to provide consistent and reliable oversight and administration for this significant and growing business.

How much have parents saved on tuition because of etc?

This question is often asked because some Christian schools have started resale shops to provide a direct annual gift to the school’s operating account. Most of these schools do not have the benefit of a Foundation the size of Highland Christian’s, which provides a significant annual gift to the school already, and so other schools are looking for ways to make a direct, immediate impact on tuition costs. By contrast, etc was formed to support and grow the Foundation, not to provide this type of direct tuition subsidy to the school.

However, there are significant benefits to parents as a result of etc’s work, and those benefits will grow over time. How so, you ask. Well, for every $100,000 that etc contributes to the Foundation, the Foundation will be able to increase its annual, recurring gift to the school by $5,000. That is not just $5,000 for one or two years, but $5,000 for as long as the school and Foundation will last. If etc were able to contribute $100,000 per year for 20 years, for example, then the Foundation would have increased its annual gift to the school by $100,000 in perpetuity, even if the resale shop were to stop at that point. In other words, with some patience, the impact of etc’s efforts will be very significant for years to come.

Merchandise and people – the necessary ingredients

The resale shop needs at least two things to succeed – many, many gifts of gently used items that can be resold, and a willing stream of volunteers. The Board and staff of the resale shop are extremely thankful for the ongoing stream of donated merchandise that keeps coming through the store. Even more important, however, are the people that God sends to help in this significant work. Not only do they bless the school and the school’s students through their efforts, but many volunteers report how their lives are enriched by the number of significant new friendships they have made since they became part of this caring and supportive community. Working together this group continues to make a major impact for God’s kingdom.