Clothing closet gives to those in need

By Cory L. Higgs

The charitable spirit of giving is alive and well in Meadows of Dan this holiday season, with the pop-up shop offering winter clothing to those who may need a little help staying warm this winter.

Housed in the Meadows of Dan Food Market’s greenhouse is the charitable pop-up shop that aims to clothe those who are going without in the cold of winter. Fran Durden is at the store helm organizing and delegating volunteers to staff and stock the store.

“We are Community Clothing Closet, offering free winter clothing and coats to anyone who needs some warm clothing this winter. All of the clothing and coats are donated; volunteers staff the Clothing Closet,” said Durden.

Her goal is to provide winter clothing and coats to anyone in the area that is in need. She was inspired to create clothing closets in Meadows of Dan after reading about a similar operation in the Floyd County community of Willis.

“The Meadows of Dan Food Market was kind enough to allow us to use their garden shed area adjacent to the store free of charge,” she said. Keeping costs low to maximize charitable giving is a top priority, and that where the volunteers come in according to Durden. Right now we have about eight volunteers who help staff the Clothing Closet, sort and wash donated clothing,” Durden said. She also mentioned the potential volunteering of Meadows of Dan Elementary students, who will help wash and sort clothing as it comes in.

The principal of Meadows of Dan Elementary, Jason Wood, said that he has seen a lot of interest from the children for volunteering. However, due to the limited space at the pop-up, only three kids can volunteer at a time. Wood said that an anonymous donor would be contributing money towards a fieldtrip to Richmond and Williamsburg for children that participated and donated their time to the pop-up closet.

Durden says that all donations of clean clothing, coats, and shoes are welcome, and that folks interested in volunteering to staff the pop-up closet are in high demand. She noted it would be great if someone is interested in staffing the store for a few hours during regular working days.

“The Meadows of Dan Community Clothing Closet is a community effort. All of the clothing and coats are donated by folks around here, and the folks helping to staff the Clothing Closet are our neighbors. Neighbors caring and sharing with our neighbors,” said Durden.

The pop-up closet will be around after the holidays until early March as the weather starts to warm up. The pop-up closet is open Wednesdays from 1 to 4 p.m. and after December 14th, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. as weather permits.

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