The Department of Health and Human Services’ (DHHS) Employment and Training Division (ETD) recently opened the “Dress for Success Clothing Closet.” It is set up at the ETD offices at 930 Sixth St. in Eureka, and is available for ETD clients working with vocational counselors.
”Many of these clients have faced difficult times and aren’t in the position to purchase new clothing for interviews or work,” said Jessica Adkisson, ETD program coordinator.
Business-appropriate suits, slacks, shirts and accessories such as shoes, belts and ties are needed so job seekers can be more competitive in the job market. Clothing for men and women will be accepted. Items must be clean and in good repair.
”We’ve been relying on generous donations from people who have an abundance of work-appropriate clothes they no longer want,” Adkisson said.
”They may be the wrong size, wrong color or wrong style for their original owner, but perfect for someone else.”
Vocational counselors refer clients to the clothing closet. Typically, clients are able to receive one full outfit at no cost.
So far, about 500 items have been collected. Donations have come from community members and staff members working at ETD and the Job Market. When needed, the Eureka Rescue Mission has made specific donations, such as a certain size shoe or clothing item.
Right now, the program is in special need of men’s clothes and shoes and size 10 and 11 women’s shoes. Organizers are also looking for volunteers to give free haircuts and shaves.
For more information about donating, call Natasha Shawula at 441-4626 or drop off donations at 930 Sixth St. (Times-Standard building), second floor, Room 201. Donation receipts can be provided for tax or record-keeping purposes.
Clothing Closet organizer Natasha Shawula displays one of the available business suits. She says the professional attire helps clients build confidence and self-esteem.