Clothing giveaway helps those in need
Published: Wednesday, November 21, 2012 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, November 20, 2012 at 1:00 p.m.
For east Gainesville resident Letita Brown, the two-day free Winter Giveaway Clothes Closet meant her five children will have warm clothes this winter.
"It's very helpful to have these clothes," said Brown. "It's helping me get jackets for my children. They need them."
Brown was one of 259 people who attended the two-day giveaway held last Friday and Saturday at Mount Carmel Baptist Church. During the sale, the fellowship hall at Mount Carmel became a store, with members of the church's Clothes Ministry taking on the role of store clerks.
Doris Crews, Clothes Ministry leader, said although the giveaway began at 9 a.m., residents were lining up by 7:30 a.m. both days. She said clothes were sorted by gender and size and placed on racks and tables that were constantly being replenished.
The giveaway included jackets, coats and other warm clothing, purses, shoes, gift items, men's suits, toys, canned goods, stationery and household items. There also was a self-serve table with coffee and candy.
"We feel good," Crews said. "Many families are being helped."
East Gainesville resident Twana Wilson said she came for clothing for her two young boys. Her 3-year-old son Tramonte Ricks quickly found what he wanted: a big stuffed Santa Claus.
"I got jackets, pants and hats for my boys," Wilson said. "I found everything I needed."
East Gainesville resident Jeanette Hewett said she came looking for work clothes in plus sizes, but couldn't find her size. Crews came to the rescue by offering to tap her contacts to get the clothes Hewett needs.
"I think this is excellent," Hewett said. "I'm blessed they want to go out of their way to help me."
East Gainesville resident Victoria King said she came to get jeans and warm clothing for her three children. "This is very important," King said. "I'm a single mom without a job and I need some help to get clothes for my children."
Bernice Dukes, a member of the Clothes Ministry who was busy replenishing the teen corner, said children's and teens' clothing go very fast.
"In this bad economy, many families are in need and hurting," said Dukes, adding that many who come are working people holding more than one job to make ends meet.
"We're trying to fill a need for the people who are hurting," Dukes said.