A Hand Up Struggles to Keep Shelves Filled With Warm Clothes

Organizations across Texoma are in need as the temperatures continue to drop. Although it has not been extremely cold yet many non profits are struggling to keep their shelves filled with warm clothing and all the basic necessities.

Nocona's A Hand Up opened its doors for us Friday and told us blankets are needed most.

Newschannel 6 crews could see they are running low on all types of warm clothing, but blankets are flying off their shelves. A hand Up says that is a problem because some of their clients do not even have electricity to stay warm.

Barbara Leonard, Program Manager says, "People will come in and sometimes will take two or three blankets. They tell me, well at least we will be able to be warm for the night because we don't have any electricity for heat."

And an empty table at the facility shows for it. Only a few sheets and blankets remain after Thursday's client pick up day. Barbara Leonard says all that is left behind on the table is all they have to spare, as far as bedding goes.

During the winter months, A Hand Up relies mostly on its storage bins to fill those shelves back up again with all the basic necessities. Leonard says, "I believe we have enough at this point depending on what kind of weather we're going to have of course and what we get from all those bins."

But the warm clothing goes fast when it is cold she says. Jackets, sweat shirts, long sleeved shirts, and coats. But they say children's clothes goes even faster. "A lot of people that do come in now are looking for kids clothing for school because they couldn't afford to go anywhere. Even if there was a tax free weekend they couldn't take advantage of that. So they come in here for that and when the kids clothes get hung up they usually go the fastest."

Leonard only hopes that as we get further into the winter season and the days grow colder community members will keep their neighbors in mind. "Maybe when they see their child dressed in the morning they would think about somebody's child that isn't able to dress like that. Maybe give an extra thing if your child has out grown something. Just feel free to bring it in here because somebody else will be able to take advantage."

A Hand Up tells Newschannel 6 small heaters are another thing many clients have been asking for. They say the heaters do not need to be brand new. They could use anything when it starts to get really cold.

A Hand Up also tells us residents in need can still come pick out clothing even though they are not registered for the food bank.

Natalie Garcia,  Newschannel 6