SAN ANTONIO — San Antonio Threads offers free clothes to kids who need them, and it's already served nearly 3,300 children this year.
Founder and CEO Cathy Hamilton said the store is important because it's the only nonprofit where youth can come in and get the exact size that fits them, at no cost.
"It's all brand new," Hamilton said. "Twice a year, everyone gets referred to come to San Antonio Threads. So we are serving our youth in foster care, our youth that are are homeless, our youth that are in our school districts, youth from other agencies, shelters, you name it. We take the referrals and provide for those youth in need."
Kids from ages 12 through 21 are treated to a VIP shopping experience. They get to choose two complete outfits, four toiletry items and more.
"We had a young man come the other day that was emotionally moved to tears. He put this head down and was apologizing for having holes in his shirt. And we told him, 'It's OK, you're going to get new shirts today, new clothes today,'" Hamilton said. "It took him a minute and then he shopped. It just means everything to these kids to have this opportunity."
Even more options will soon hit the racks at San Antonio Threads. Hamilton said they just received more than 100 pallets of brand new merchandise. She didn't reveal who was behind the generous donation.
“We can’t say who just yet," Hamilton said. “I can tell you that it’s high-end, designer merchandise. We’ve received 105 pallets of it.”
However, Hamilton said it's the largest donation in the store's five-year history, and the size of the incredible gift has caused a bit of a problem.
She needs more hands to take care of it.
“We need volunteers to process this huge donation," Hamilton said. "The volunteers would help us unbox the new merchandise, hang it, sort it.”
Hamilton said any amount of time you can give is appreciated. She said even an hour or two each week is enough to make you part of a greater mission.
“New clothing that lifts their spirits, raises their self-esteem," Hamilton said. "They feel loved and cared for because we have done the work to provide this for them.”
The San Antonio Food Bank is storing the pallets of donated merchandise for San Antonio Threads. Hamilton said they'll drop off 18 of them at the store each week to make the intake process more manageable.
If you'd like to volunteer at San Antonio Threads, click here.