Event treats kids to new clothes

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“Dress-A-Child” gives children in need a chance to get new outfits.

Volunteers Cyndi Johnson (left) and Ginger Mecham (right) helped Morgan Womack, age 10 (center), of Nampa, shop for clothing.

The new JC Penney store in Nampa, Idaho recently hosted Canyon County’s first Salvation Army Dress-A-Child event. Fifty Canyon County children were treated to a shopping spree for the items they most needed.

“This is a great partnership between JC Penney and The Salvation Army,” said Rick Aller, Nampa store manager. “It kicks off our holiday and gets us in the holiday spirit.”

Ongoing sponsorship of the John F. Nagel Foundation has made Dress-A-Child possible for years in Boise. This year, a $5,000 foundation donation for the Canyon County Dress-A-Child program brought the event to the Nampa area. An extra coupon and reduced prices at JC Penney helped stretch the funds further.

Morgan Womack, 10, beamed as she modeled her new skirt, jeans and tops for her shopping advisors Ginger Mecham and Cyndi Johnson. Mecham and Johnson are two young mothers who responded to a flier circulated in their church, soliciting volunteers for the program.

“We thought, 5:30 in the morning? Why not?” Johnson said.

“My mom always used to ask me, what’s in your closet?” Mecham added. ‘I wanted to help Morgan find things she would wear a lot that would go together and also with the things she already has at home.”

Nampa Salvation Army Corps Officer Captain Monica King said that Dress-A-Child is about more just providing new, warm clothing to children.

“It is a day that volunteers meet a very special child they will never forget,” she said. “It is a day that leaves a lasting impression upon a child that says people are kind and people care.”
King added that each child is recognized as someone unique, special and valued.

“Long after a little boy or girl grows out of those new shoes,” she said, “that feeling will remain.”

Excerpts from the Idaho Press Tribune
Used by permission

Photo by Rick Hempsmyer

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