St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, 400 11th St., hosts its annual Free Clothes for Kids — after a year’s hiatus — on Friday, Aug. 16 from 4-7 p.m. and Saturday, Aug. 17 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
The event is free and open to all, and features clothes for kids in elementary through high school, with some infant and toddler items.
“We welcome everyone,” said volunteer Nealya Cargill. “As the family enters the church, we ask which community they live in and how many children they have. This helps us see which communities we are serving. In the past, we’ve have had nothing but good responses from people who come to this event. A lot of youngsters leave with smiles.”
While the event itself spans two days, it takes volunteers much longer than that to wash, sort and display the items. All clothing displayed has been cleaned — any clothing that is donated during the week for the event must be washed or cleaned beforehand in order for volunteers to accept it.
“Once we wash they clothes, they are returned to the church in white bags and marked ‘girls’ or ‘boys,’” Cargill said.
The clothes were brought to the sanctuary after the Aug. 11 church service and on Aug. 12, about 15 volunteers began the week-long work of setting up and helping those who come in find the items they need.
“This year, we have a mother and daughter group that has offered to help,” Cargill said. “The mothers are fostering community outreach, and we appreciate their help.
“We thank everyone who has worked to make this year’s Free Clothes for Kids successful.”