Columbia thrift retailer gives free garments to these in want by way of referral program

Columbia thrift retailer gives free garments to these in want by way of referral program

4 minutes, 8 seconds Read

It’s referral day at The Wardrobe.

A line wraps across the white-painted constructing, seated on the nook of Eighth Avenue and Park Avenue, as folks look ahead to the thrift retailer to open

Garments depart on racks and enter in blue plastic luggage. Guests attempt on shirts, check sneakers and experiment with outfit mixtures.

The Wardrobe is a neighborhood Columbia thrift retailer the place anybody can discover garments at an inexpensive value. However Tuesdays are particularly for folks with referrals, which permit them to get free clothes as soon as a month.

Volunteers are additionally busy checking folks in.

The Wardrobe is a neighborhood thrift retailer whose earnings go towards offering faculty youngsters with new sneakers. KBIA’s Katie Quinn reviews.

As a non-profit, The Wardrobe depends upon volunteers to maintain the group going. One volunteer Georgia Morehouse has been part of its mission because it opened in 1970.

“My complete wardrobe is The Wardrobe,” Morehouse stated.

She was one of many “church women” who started volunteering on the retailer, desirous to discover a method to assist the group.

Georgia Morehouse sits on a chair in her home. She is wearing an Arizona State hoodie.

Georgia Morehouse moved to Columbia within the Sixties. She started volunteering at The Wardrobe in 1970.

Now, at 89, she continues to volunteer. Her favourite half is hanging up garments and seeing folks discover a piece that brings them pleasure.

Morehouse stated referrals on Tuesdays are an essential a part of The Wardrobe’s mission.

“However the school-aged children particularly as a result of it may be so demeaning to not have the identical sort of garments different folks put on in school,” Morehouse stated.

Evette Nissen, The Wardrobe’s board chair, stated about 100 folks use their referrals each week.

“You will get a referral from native companies right here on the town,” Nissen stated. “Additionally, many of the faculty counselors or homeschool communicators on the colleges will get the referral types for the dad and mom or guardians.”

The Voluntary Motion Heart (VAC) is a kind of native companions. It helps low-income households with primary and emergency wants, like clothes.

“A whole lot of households actually wrestle with what they’re capable of spend their cash on,” Christy Low, the providers coordinator at VAC, stated. “I believe once they can go and discover some clothes for his or her children to go to highschool that possibly don’t have holes or rips or tears in order that they know their children aren’t being judged by the way in which they appear or what they’re carrying is basically useful to a variety of households.”

Lowe stated the VAC gave out greater than 600 referrals for 1,700 folks final yr – to households and folks in want, equivalent to these experiencing homelessness.

“It seems like all we did was ship a bit of paper, however we could assist that individual get a pair of socks and sneakers for his or her ft in the event that they’re experiencing homelessness and frightened about frostbite and being out within the chilly,” Lowe stated.

To get a referral from the VAC, all folks should do is name to see in the event that they’re certified. {Qualifications} embrace residing in Boone County and having a gross month-to-month revenue at or under 200% of the federal poverty guideline. That’s about $60,000 a yr for a household of 4.

She stated if folks simply want a referral for clothes, the VAC can typically get the referral despatched to The Wardrobe the identical day.

Clothes are lined up on racks inside The Wardrobe.

All garments and gadgets bought at The Wardrobe are donated by the general public.

For Nissen, it’s about serving to folks on the instances they may want it.

“Not solely those that don’t have anything, however those that possibly simply don’t have a job proper now,” she stated. “They’ll are available in and get what they want at that cut-off date.”

The entire clothes and gadgets are donated by the group. The Wardrobe accepts donations on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays.

Proceeds go towards offering faculty youngsters with new sneakers.

In 2022, The Wardrobe gave out greater than 2,000 shoe vouchers to children in want.

Nissen stated to get a shoe voucher, households should first get a referral from a neighborhood service company, faculty counselor or principal.

“Our referral purchasers which have youngsters in grades Ok by way of 12 in Boone County Public Faculties should purchase a shoe coupon for $5. Then they take that coupon to Shoe Carnival, the place they’ll purchase a pair of sneakers as much as $40,” Nissen stated.

Vouchers may be bought by dad and mom and guardians on referral Tuesdays at The Wardrobe. To redeem a voucher, the kid have to be current at Shoe Carnival. A voucher may be redeemed each six months.

Similar Posts