Non-profit for disabled boosts business with eBay

July 18, 2008 9:08:54 AM PDT
In a difficult economy, many not-for-profit organizations are looking for creative funding opportunities. A disabled organization in Chicago has found a solution-- eBay.Hoping to create job opportunities and generate revenue, Neu-to-U is selling new and used items on eBay.

"I'm wearing shoes that I bought on eBay, and I find that it's great way to get your favorite designers, your favorite products and actually spend less money," said Eileen Durkin, CEO of Neumann Association and a significant eBay shopper.

The organization got into the eBay business several months ago.

"We sell a lot of different things," said Durkin. "We have donations. People are very generous and donate things to us. We also work with wholesalers, and so we sell a lot of high end cosmetics."

Durkin says that they are the only disabled organization providing this level of services on eBay.

People who donate to Neumann's eBay business get tax deductions in the amount the item sold for, Durkin said, "and they're giving people with disabilities a chance to work."

Faye Malicay, 33, had been trying to find a secretarial job, but was instead offered photography work.

"I take pictures and Colleen like puts them on eBay, and people hopefully (will buy them)," said Malicay.

Andrew Beebe is another Neumann client who works with the eBay business. He is 36 years old and has a severe learning disability. He is responsible for packing and shipping items that have been sold.

"This is a pair of Coach shoes. It goes in this box one at a time," explained Beebe as he worked.

So far Neumann has sold more than 500.

"The post man has certainly gotten a lot of work since this Neu-to-U business took off," Durkin said.

The association's long-term goal is to continue to provide job training opportunities for their clients, said Durkin, adding that they would "love to see clients open their own eBay business."

For more info go to www.neumannassociation.org


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