Teen Closet Program
Kids’ Closet Program
About Kids’ Closet
Kids’ Closet will reopen for the 2022 Spring session on Thursday, January 20. We have 1,615 children scheduled to receive clothing.
As the primary program of SaddleBrooke Community Outreach (SBCO), Kids’ Closet provides new wardrobes for children (Head Start through Eighth grade) in the fall and again in the spring.
In 2019 Kids’ Closet provided clothing, shoes, backpacks, toiletries and books to 2,982 children from Catalina in Pima County through the Pinal County “Copper Corridor”, up to Superior, across to Miami and down to the San Carlos Apache Indian Reservation in Gila County.
Kids’ Closet is open from September to the middle of December for winter clothes and again from the end of January through April for spring clothes. In 2019 Kids’ Closet transitioned to a bar code system for tracking clothing from the time it is received until it is distributed. Computerization has simplified purchasing and inventory management while improving team communication.
These students come from 9 school districts located from Catalina to 100 miles north to San Carlos and Miami. Most schools bus the students on Mondays and Thursdays, while other students come with their parents. We are open on some Saturdays to better accommodate parents’ schedules. Each school determines whether the child qualifies (usually eligibility is determined by Free and Reduced Lunch Program standards).
History of Kids’ Closet
On October 2, 1997 Kids’ Closet was born. That first year 358 children were clothed. Kids’ Closet has gone through quite a few changes over the years to where we are today. We now provide approximately 3,000 wardrobes to qualified children each year. The history of SBCO, how it started and how we got here, is interesting and worth reading. Click here for the story.
Our Kids’ Closet Building
In the summer of 2012 Kids’ Closet moved back to Mammoth to its new 12,000 sq. ft. building! This has been designed and set up to best serve the kids. Mammoth was chosen as the location as it is much closer for several school districts in the Northern part of our service area, and no further for the Southern school districts or the volunteers.
We now have one large dressing area where the children shop and try on the clothes in 14 dressing rooms. There are 2 waiting rooms with the restrooms located nearby and a 6,000 sq. ft. warehouse to accommodate all the merchandise. The town of Mammoth has leased the land to SBCO at $1.00 a year for 30 years which is a real plus for SBCO and for the town. It is a win-win for everyone!
Volunteer to Help the Kids
When you help these students choose their new clothing (which in many cases are their first new clothes) you will have a feeling of pride in giving back to the community for all the blessings we have here in SaddleBrooke.
Contact us directly at email@example.com
We need 25 to 30 volunteers to assist the kids with their shopping experience each day we are open. Our volunteers meet in the morning and carpool or ride-share up to Mammoth. Please consider being a part of this fun day with your friendly neighbors.
Aside from working directly with the kids we also have a variety of other volunteer positions available. Call the SBCO office (520-825-3302) to volunteer or to get more information. We will be happy to assist you.
“I want to wear my new shoes because the ones I came in with are my brother’s.”
“Special thanks to ALL contribute in making our children smile.” Delores
“Thank you 4 the clothes and all the help and time you did to make my life better.” Tony
What teenager would not jump at a chance to shop for clothes?
Using shopping as a motivator to keep teenagers focused on schoolwork, and mindful of how they can make a difference in their community, SBCO Teen Closet was begun as an outgrowth of Kids’ Closet.
An early concept for Teen Closet was to give students the opportunity to attend high school with contemporary, new clothing and an increase in self-respect.
Teen Closet serves students in grades 9-12 who reside in SBCO service area. At present those districts represented are: Oracle, Mammoth-San Manuel, Hayden Winkelman, Ray and Superior school districts. During each school semester the Teens work toward a shopping trip to local shops.
Initially participants are nominated by their 8th grade principal or counselor for a shopping trip at their beginning of the 9th grade. Students are selected based on their economic need, and their perceived ability to complete the requirements during the next semester. Those requirements include:
+ Residence in the above-mentioned districts
+ Attendance without excessive absences
+ Maintenance of a C or better average grade
+ Completion of 6 hours of Community Service
Shopping trips are held both in July, at the beginning of the Fall semester, and then again in January, at the beginning of the Spring semester. New and continuing students are invited to meet with a SBCO Volunteer, their “Personal Shopper” at the local Target in Oro Valley.
The student is given a budget with which he or she can purchase school appropriate clothing and school supplies at both the Target and at the Ross stores. The Volunteer’s role is to encourage the student to make wise choices and stay within their budget.
A Teen Closet participant can shop for their entire 4 years of high school, provided they have met the requirements for each semester.
During the Covid-19 pandemic, Teen Closet has been awarding gift cards for Target and Ross to eligible students, in lieu of personal shopping.