By Samantha SLAYBACK
In May 1970, 65 women decided to combine their talents and efforts to raise money for the Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles (CHLA) by opening The Green House. Since its opening, the little shop has changed locations twice, closed and reopened, and is now looking to the community for help when facing the possibility of closing its doors for good.
Originally, The Green House was a green-framed house on Green Street in Pasadena, just as the name would imply. However, 10 years later and 110 members stronger, the shop moved to Haskett Court on California Boulevard. There it stayed until 1986, when an increase in costs forced members to question whether or not to continue the business. After a vote, members decided to close the doors, liquidate the inventory, and donate the proceeds to the hospital, though funds were retained to enable a possible reopening in the future.
“In August 1987, a general membership meeting was held to explore interest in beginning again,” said the shop’s current manager, Reagan Boone. “In September 1987 our currant location at 696 E. Colorado Blvd. was found.”
Today, The Green House has less than 40 members. Having fewer members has affected the store’s hours of operation, reducing them considerably. This resulted in less revenue to CHLA.
“After rent and paying for all new merchandise, all of our money goes to CHLA,” explained Boone. “We have relied on the generosity of private family endowments from 1970 in the amount of $5,000 to $10,000 in a calendar year to offset the cost of rent and day-to-day expenses. This money is no longer coming in.”
Over the years, The Green House has given CHLA over a million dollars and funds a surgical research endowment. But due to rent increases set to take place in 2016, the little shop of donations currently has no choice but to close its doors.
The shop sells a variety of merchandise, from knick-knacks and jewelry to children’s toys and more. Members are still welcoming customers until their last day, which is scheduled for Oct. 31.
“We are always looking for a miracle,” said Boone. “After 45 years of supporting CHLA it looks like the end.”
If interested in learning more or helping The Green House stay in business, stop by the shop or email Reagan Boone at firstname.lastname@example.org.