Nonprofit Assistance League aids SLPS students with clothing

ST. LOUIS - It`s a ribbon cutting for an unused space in the basement of this school that`s making a difference against Mother Nature and cold temperatures.

“This is the first year we`re doing the closet where they come in and check,” says Kimberly Sharp, Family & Community Specialist Adams Elementary.   “Liaison Mary Price comes in and checks once a month.  They keep us stocked up and anything we`re out of they replenish.”

“We have this closet because we`re finding that a lot of the kids are growing out of their uniforms,” says Roxie Randolph, Assistance League President. “We dress them early on and they grow out of them.”

At Adams Elementary, they dedicated their new AL`s closet, Tuesday morning.

This is one of 17 fully equipped closets in Saint Louis public schools offering basic clothing needs to children that might need some assistance.

“We had Assistance League at my last school,” says Felicia Miller, Principal Adams Elementary.  “I love Assistance League it helps so much.  We have a lot of students that cannot afford uniforms or their parents get their uniforms at the beginning of the year that they grow out of very quickly.  And with Assistance League, we`re able to provide uniforms to those students in need.”

But not just uniforms.

There are also shoes and socks and personal hygiene products or maybe just a plush bear to a student in need.

Helping them focus on their studies rather on where their basic necessities might be coming from.

“Seventeen schools in the St. Louis school district,” says Jane Harbron, Assistance League President-Elect.  “We do 30 schools across St. Louis city and county but we have the closets this year in the city schools as a pilot to see how we need to manage books and shoes within the school district.”

Assistance League, the non-profit organization with 516 volunteers serving their community, has provided school uniforms for children for 26 years.

“I`m a former teacher and this is a way I can get hugs from kids,’ says Pam Bogosian, VP Philanthropic Programs Assistance League.  ‘You know when you`re helping kids they have such a smile just as you saw when we were fitting them with coats over here.  It`s just, oh my gosh, it makes me feel good.”

Using the space, they have, to fill this closet with the things they need.