County Clothing Center is in need of donations as demand rises

The Phyllis Zumkehr County Clothing Center, which provides free clothing and small household items to all comers, is in need of increased donations as a result of an uptick in demand.

The CCC, located at 3377 State Route 59 in Ravenna, is run by volunteers with help from a dozen local churches and area organizations. The store is stocked entirely by donations, and shoppers do not have to demonstrate need, Program Manager Candy Pollard said.

There is no way to know why current demand is so high, but Pollard said it may be due at least in part to current economic pressures.

The center is in particular need of clean blankets and size 5 and 6 diapers. In-season men’s, women’s and children’s clothing is always accepted as long as the items are clean, unstained and in good repair. People may also donate clean, unstained socks, underwear and bras; clean, gently worn shoes; and belts, scarves and canes.

The center also accepts bedsheets of all sizes. Pollard made a particular plea for crib blankets and sheets, which she said are always in demand. Adult bed protectors, also called chucks, are needed as well.

Acceptable bathroom items include shower seats, shower curtains and hooks, and towels and washcloths.

People may donate kitchen items such as toasters, drip coffee makers, fans and microwaves. All items must be clean and in good working order. Kitchen towels and washcloths, colanders, dish drainers, can openers and other cooking utensils are welcome, especially larger-sized pots and pans.

The center will also take lamps, curtain rods and laundry baskets. Lamps must be clean and in good working order.

There is always a need for unused soap, shampoo and deodorant, Pollard said.

Anyone who would like to donate paper towels, which Pollard and her volunteer staff use for center upkeep, is welcome to do so.

Donations may be made by appointment only. Call 330-296-0503 to schedule an appointment.

The CCC is open for shopping from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Beyond stipulating that all shoppers must be at least 12 years old, there are no restrictions as to who may shop. 

Shopping is limited to two times a month, so limited customer data is taken at each visit. That data indicates that 20% of shoppers are first-time customers, Pollard said. 

The clothing center is an arm of Family & Community Services, a nonprofit agency headquartered in Portage County.

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Wendy DiAlesandro is a former Record Publishing Co. reporter and contributing writer for The Portager.