Many of us donate clothes on a regular basis to the Cupboard. The majority of the donated clothes go directly to the visitors of the Saturday Cupboard. Hundreds of items of clothing are displayed that our guests can “shop” from to find what they need. This is a great service that benefits the people in our community who are most in need of a fresh pair of pants, underwear, new shoes, etc. Every once in a while the Cupboard leaders and church office will get special requests.
This week, I made a special request to the Cupboard. I have a client who has been in prison since he was 16 years old and he is now 57. He’s being released from prison today (Feb 9th) on parole after being resentenced under the new juvenile life without parole statutes. MW has end-stage cancer and is very thin. He has been very concerned about what he is going to wear at the hospice facility, he didn’t want to have to wear hospital gown or keep his prison jumpsuit. He has not worn civilian clothing in decades. He had no idea his size outside of the prison jumpsuit sizing and I didn’t know where to begin. His build is similar to that of John O so I requested that, if clothes were available, could someone pull together a package of a few items for me to drop off at the hospice for him. The Old First staff was fantastic and pulled together several outfits and a pair of shoes, as well as some toiletry items. This is a great starter pack for a man who is starting a new stage in life, and not the one he had imagined when his legal situation began to change.
This isn’t the first time I’ve referred a client to the Cupboard for clothing and I’m sure it won’t be the last. I appreciate being connected with such a generous community so that when these emergency situations arrive, we can provide for those who are not able to provide for themselves. It is not only the homeless that benefit from our Cupboard donations, but the newly released citizens of our city, and others who may not have enough to provide for themselves. If you were ever wondering if your donations count in the lives of those who receive the clothing, the answer is yes!
For more on this particular man: http://www.philly.com/philly/news/20161213_Teen_killer__40_years_on__goes_home_to_die.html