Rocky Fork Enterprise

Free children's clothing available Aug. 10 at Good Samaritan Church

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Gahanna-Jefferson Public Schools residents needing assistance with back-to-school clothing could outfit their elementary-age kids for free, thanks to Good Samaritan Church and Royal Manor Elementary School.

Free, gently used clothing will be available for students in grades K-5 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 10, at the Good Samaritan Church, 620 McCutcheon Road.

The clothing is available to all area families on a first-come, first-served basis.

Coordinator Pam Carey said the clothing drive is in collaboration with Royal Manor. Principal Rick Oxley came up with the idea for the drive that launched last year.

"Good Samaritan has been our school partner for the last five years," Oxley said. "They do all the work."

He said children grow fast, so parents often have slightly used clothing that could benefit others.

"The cost of new clothes increases every day," Oxley said. "This is a simple way to help families in our community."

It's a win-win project, Carey said.

"People who want to donate clothing can get rid of it," she said. "We become the benefactor, and we get to give it out. We have grandparents out there raising children. We have families in crisis."

Initially, she said, each family could select 10 items of clothing per child.

"If we see we have an abundance of clothing, they're welcome to come back and can have as many items as possible in the final hour," Carey said.

A clothing collection was held July 27, but anyone still may donate items at the church between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m.

Carey said some sizes are in shortage, and boys clothing is most needed. She said a good amount already has been collected for distribution.

"People who have donated have been very gracious," Carey said. "We're asking for children's clothing, but we'll take any clothing. Whatever we have and the needs are, we try to meet those needs."

The clothing drive assisted about 75 children last year.

Carey said the children should reside in the Gahanna-Jefferson school district.

"We prefer they be in the Gahanna schools," she said. "It's an effort for the Gahanna community. We feel like our community is our target."

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