Community unites to donate to clothing drive

Published 6:30 pm Monday, March 27, 2023

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Hundreds of bags of clothes were donated to the clothing drive at West Point First United Methodist Church for victims of the storm over the weekend.

Donations began pouring in from 5 p.m. on Sunday. By Monday at noon, the clothing drive was full. 

“It’s the right thing to do,” said West Point City Councilman and volunteer Joel Finley. “There are people who no longer have a home to go rest in or take a shower in, and they’re suffering right now. Trying to help them get back on their feet is important.”

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On Sunday, one community member dropped off several boxes of clothes of all sizes. The Christian Service Center also dropped off a truckload of items. Those wishing to donate should call the church to check if more is needed.

“It’s been awesome,” Finley said. “The other fellow church members that have come up to help and sort out and take care of this little donation center that we’ve set up show the compassion that our community has for one another. The donations just immediately started happening as soon as it got on Facebook.”

The church is working with the Red Cross to run the clothing drive for the shelter at the West Point Gym. Finley, a member of the church, visited the Red Cross shelter on Sunday and discovered the need. 

“I’m blessed,” Finley said. “Because I did not have any storm damage done, and if I was in their shoes, I would absolutely love the fact that somebody is trying to help out in a time of need.”

Finley said the Red Cross asked that a local church hold a clothing drive to help those in need after the tornado and flooding. After the donations are sorted, the Red Cross will bring storm victims to the church to get what they need from the clothing drive.

“That’s what the Red Cross was asking if a local church could run it, so that it would allow the people living in the shelter to have some privacy,” Finley said. 

With all the donations rolling in, the church needs more volunteers for sorting and distributing clothes, shoes, toys, linens, toiletries and other donations Monday through Wednesday. The drive will run from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m each day. Volunteers can come by the Zachary Center at 306 East 7th Street.

The church has tables filled with women’s, men’s and children’s clothes. There are also shoes, belts and toys. 

“It’s nice to see the community come together for an event like this,” Finley said.