Found4Kids: When Students Need Clothes

Posted On Monday December 09, 2019

When families with children in SD73 schools struggle to provide their children with the clothes they need, they can ask the Found4Kids Society for help. The society gathers and then redistributes lost and found items from the district schools through a coupon system. The items are washed and then organized in a thrift-store like setting. Each family makes an appointment to visit the Found4Kids space currently housed at the Lansdowne Mall in Kamloops. Sessions are private, and families are able to take what they need, for free.

“I tell them, take what you need, and need what you take,” said society founder Dianne Noble.  

This is the ninth year of operation for the society. Noble is noticing an increasing number of families who are underemployed, who regularly have to decide between groceries and a new pair of shoes for their children.

“One mother contacted me recently saying she had a child who has gone through a growth spurt since September, and she’s unable to replace the clothes the child has outgrown.”

In another situation, a student who was accepted to participate in the Model UN was considering not attending because he didn’t have the right clothes to wear. Found4Kids provided him with clothes and a suit. He not only attended the event, he won an award there.

Another student was coming to school cold every day instead of wearing the single hoodie they owned, because they were afraid it would be lost somehow.

“We want families in need to know we are here to help, if they are struggling to meet basic needs,” “We keep a record of how many students we help each year. The average is around 80, but one year there were 123,” said Noble. “As more people get to know about us, that number may go up,” Noble said. “We want families in need to know we are here to help, if they are struggling to meet basic needs.”

If you know of anyone attending a School District No. 73 school who needs this kind of help, you can contact the school office to ask about Found4Kids coupons, or you can email Dianne at dianne@found4kids.com.

The society operates with volunteer labour in the donated space at the mall. As grateful as she is to the mall’s management for giving them the space, it is tenuous, because the society could be asked to vacate at any time. Noble is hoping to find “… four walls and a roof where we are not always facing the prospect of being asked to move with two weeks’ notice.”

 

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