The Court Appointed Special Advocates program announces the opening of its CASA’s Kids Kloset.
De Vere Karlson, coordinator for CASA, said she is excited about the opening of the closet.
“The mayor (Ken Tedford Jr.) was very kind to us and donated two upstairs rooms at the Old Post Office,” Karlson said. “We weren’t suppose to open the closet until January, but because there was such a demand for it, we had to open it sooner. We opened early because we had kids that needed clothes.”
Karlson said volunteer Sharron Goodson is the “manager” of the closet.
“I called Sharron, who is a friend of CASA … she’s in charge of this facility,” Karlson said. “She use to operate a similar facility that social services had … she operated it on the side while she was a foster parent. I knew she had experience, so I contacted her and asked her to run the kids closet.”
Karlson said clothing donations have already started to poor in.
“We have been lucky so far with great donations from people in the community and CASA’s,” Karlson said. “We’re accepting clothing from newborns all the way up to teenagers. At this moment we’re in need of teenager items, toiletry items, winter clothing, pajamas, backpacks, suitcases and shoes. But we do ask that shoes, socks and underwear be new and we accept monetary donations as well.”
Goodson and Karlson both echoed the importance of having the children feel good in the clothing they’re wearing.
“These children are coming from a tough situation to begin with so making sure they have good clothing to put on there back is important to us,” Karlson said.
A lot of the children who go into foster home come with just the clothes on their back, Goodson said.
“I remember one time I got a call in the middle of the night about needing to take in some children,” Goodson said. “When we got the kids they were extremely filthy and so were their clothes. We couldn’t even bring the clothes in the house they were that dirty and it took hours to get the kids clean.”
Karlson said the Kids Kloset is only for children under the supervision of Division of Child and Family Services.
“This facility will be accessible to CASA’s or personnel 24/7,” Karlson said. “They will be able to come get a key and access it at any time. They will be able to bring the children here and get what is needed for the children.”
CASA’s Kids Kloset is accepting donations.
“We appreciate any donations that we can get,” Karlson said. “A good drop-off point for now is at the District Court office … hopefully, in the next week or so I will be able to get a barrel to put outside of the Kids Kloset doors or downstairs at the Old Post Office so donations can be put in there when no one is there, or I can be contacted about donations at 775-423-6088 ext. 255.”
Karlson said she is grateful for the donations that have been made to help benefit the Kids Kloset and is thankful for the communities support.