Joseph’s Coat, a The Storehouse of Collin County program that provides clothing at no cost, is accepting donations of warm children’s clothing, athletic shoes and new underwear.
“We live in challenging times, and when families are struggling to pay bills and put food on the table, purchasing new clothing is not something up for discussion,” said Christi Ferrell, director of Joseph’s Coat. “Since its founding in 2009, Joseph’s Coat depends on the generous donations of our community, which enable us to serve our neighbors each week at no cost. With more cold weather expected, we are reaching out to the community to ask for warm clothing for children as our supply has been drained. Additionally, the need for athletic shoes and new underwear is ongoing.”
Last year, Joseph’s Coat distributed 64,657 articles of clothing at no cost to 2,337 households as well as 2,015 winter coats. Since expanding appointment options from one to three days last fall, Joseph’s Coat’s output of clothing items has increased from approximately 4,000 articles a month to 8,000.
“Joseph’s Coat has seen a lot of changes in the past couple of years,” added Candace Winslow, executive director of The Storehouse of Collin County. “When the pandemic struck in March 2020, we closed Joseph’s Coat as a health precaution. In August of that year, we began looking at reopening with an appointment-only model to eliminate long lines of neighbors waiting to select clothing. As the demand for clothing began to rise, the calendar was booked 60 days in advance. When St. Andrew Methodist provided us with dedicated space in 2022, we created a model of service to serve neighbors three days a week, which has led to a need for more clothing donations and volunteers. We are beyond grateful to St. Andrew for this dedicated space, which enables us to serve more neighbors, and to the community for their ongoing generous donations.”
The clothing closet is now open on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays by appointment only. Clothing items may be dropped off at any time in the donation bin located in the north parking lot of The Storehouse of Collin County at 1401 Mira Vista. Volunteers and those needing an appointment can sign up online. A form of ID is required at the appointment time, and neighbors can make an appointment once every two months.
“Joseph’s Coat helps my family with needs that can’t be met otherwise,” said Olga V., a neighbor who has used the closet for her family. “We run out of things to wear with our kids that are growing. This means everything to us. This is such a blessing.”
Joseph’s Coat was founded in 2009 shortly after Sharon Hasley, wife of the late Rev. Robert Hasley, founded the food pantry. As the pantry grew, Hasley noticed during that first winter that many families did not have warm attire. Seeing the need, she ran home and grabbed coats out of her closet to hand out to the neighbors, and Joseph’s Coat was established as the second program of The Storehouse. Today, Joseph’s Coat’s dedicated 3,100-square-foot space accommodates up to 6,000 articles of clothing on any given service day.