Community Clothes Closet looking for goods
By Joe Reavis
The newly formed Community Clothes Closet in Princeton is stocking its shelves and is now looking for customers to help.
Customers are area residents who are needy or have had a stroke of bad luck, such as a house fire.
“There are so many ways people can get down on their luck. Those are the people we want to try and help,” Larry Abbott, a member of Princeton Lions Club, said.
The clothes closet is a joint project of Princeton Lions, Princeton Ministerial Alliance, the chamber of commerce and First Baptist Church, and is housed at the church.
McKinney Lions Club initiated the project by inquiring whether the Princeton club would like to be a distribution point for clothes it regularly receives from stores, items that were overstocked or not sold.
Abbott reports the Princeton club accepted the offer and contacted the other community organizations to set up shop.
“We are just getting started,” Abbott said. “We hope it will go.”
The Lions Club member provides transportation, builds clothes racks and undertakes any other tasks that may be needed under the direction of June Taylor, who is overseeing the clothes closet project.
Clothes arrive in bags and boxes, transported to Princeton in the back of Abbott’s pickup truck. Distributions from McKinney will be 3-4 times per year as seasons change.
“You never know what you are going to get, or how much you are going to get,” Abbott said.
In addition to the McKinney Lions contributions, the Princeton facility recently received 38 boxes of clothes donated from an area discount store.
Taylor reported that women of FBC unpack, sort and organize shipments. The upstairs of the church gymnasium facility is being utilized as the closet, with separate rooms for men’s, women’s and children’s clothing. All the clothing is new, and much of it is still tagged.
Community Clothes Closet started organizing in spring and gave away its first clothes on July 2. Business has not been brisk, yet, but it is hoped that traffic will increase soon.
“I feel like we will be busier as school starts,” Taylor said.
The program is tied in closely with the Princeton Food Pantry operated out of Faith Baptist Church. Chad Rowell, First Baptist pastor, explained that food applicants are screened to determine need and that the clothes closet is utilizing those screenings, and referrals from the pantry.
Hours for the clothes also match the food pantry, 10 a.m. until noon on the first Thursday and fourth Tuesday of the month, and from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. on the second Tuesday of the month.
Abbott pointed out that the Princeton Lions recently received tax-exempt status and is taking donations to the clothes closet.