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Our Closet is a volunteer-driven organization that provides clothing to vulnerable Philadelphians and their families free of charge by operating "pop-up shops" throughout the city. We offer community members who are struggling to make ends meet the opportunity to receive free, quality clothing in the "pop-up shop" in a dignified and welcoming space. Our goal is to meet a basic need for our shoppers so they can better focus on handling other stressors in their lives, such as securing a steady source of income or finding permanent housing solutions, with confidence.
Executive Director Jill Aschkenasy founded Our Closet in 2011 in response to a crisis she witnessed that year: a Philadelphia family’s house had burned down, and they were in need of the most basic items to regain stability during an undoubtedly frightening and stressful time. Hearing this, Jill reached out to her network to help this family, and the response she received was overwhelming. Donations poured in from friends, family members, and neighbors to help this unknown family rebuild their home. These moments of crisis and instability are sadly all too common in our city, and as Jill continued to learn of these stories, she continued to put out calls to action, receiving unwavering support with each request. Identifying an opportunity to bridge excess and need within the city, Jill founded Our Closet to provide support to the many families and individuals whose stories remain untold. Since its founding, Our Closet has distributed more than an estimated 30,000 articles of clothing to more than 7,000 shoppers in the city.
- Rikka Azuma
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