St. Petersburg, Florida-Since 2002, Clothes to Kids in Clearwater has helped families in need. Each school aged child receives two complete wardrobes at no cost each year.
The need had grown and now a second location has opened in St. Petersburg at 3251 Third Avenue North. The new store opened with help from the Junior League of St. Petersburg. The League has made a three year financial commitment of 50-thousand dollars and will provide volunteers for 4 years.
"This is our Signature Project," says Chloe Firebaugh with the Junior League. This Saturday the League and Clothes to Kids will help clothes 50 school children.
Set up like any retail clothing store, Clothes to Kids has a girls and boys section everything is sized and there's even a personal shopper, except here customers don't pay.
"It's a blessing that's all I can say. The way times are now it's rough for everybody," says Shirley Borgans. She's shopping for her daughter's three children.
"She's been having hard times, her husband just started working, she was the only one working only one carrying the load," explains Borgans.
It's Shirley Bogans first time at Clothes to Kids. "They have nice clothes. They have nice clothes," says Bogans as she looks through a rack of jeans for her oldest granddaughter.
Top on Shirley's list is keeping her grandkids warm. "Coats, winter clothes. It's cold," says Bogans.
It's the same for mother of three Kelly Benczi. Her daughter put in this request. "One thing she did ask for was a nice thick jacket. She was in two layers of clothing this morning when she left the house," says Benczi as she holds up a black wool-like coat.
Benczi says she just got laid off from her job and Clothes to Kids has been a big financial help over the years. "I love it. My kids love it. It's good quality name brand clothes in good condition. I come every 6 months twice a year for years."
During the last 7 years, Clothes to Kids has provided more than 30-thousand wardrobes to more than 30-thousand children fulfilling it's motto "Clothe a child change a life."
"A child will do better in school, in their self development and confidence by having the right clothing and being warm, especially right now," adds Firebaugh.
Shirley's walks out of Clothes to Kids knowing grandkids can now worry about their school work instead of their school clothes.
Clothes to Kids accepts new and gently used clothing for children. The new store in St. Petersburg is in need of jackets and pants for teenage boys. Families are seen by appointment and with a referral from their child's school or a social agency.
The Clearwater store is located at 1059 N. Hercules Avenue. The phone number is 727-441-5050.
The St. Petersburg store is located at 3251 Third Ave. North. The phone number is 727-327-7100.