Marlow Samaritans Clothing Store Temporarily Closes

by Cricket Holland

During a recent meeting of the Marlow Samaritans, members of the Board voted to temporarily close the clothing store portion of the organization. The Food Bank and Emergency Needs will still function in the same manner as in the past.

“We hope to reopen the clothing portion in January of 2020,” said board president Carolyn Lowe, “but it will depend on whether or not someone is willing to take over that volunteer position.”

The ultimate reason for the closing came to light when the current clothing store manager, Kathy Thompson, suffered a severe stroke. Thompson continues to be treated at a specialist rehabilitation center in Edmond. According to family members, progress is slow but Thompson is showing improvements.

“Without someone, not only to oversee the daily operations required to keep donations brought inside our facility and retrieved from our outside box, they would have to sort through those donations, be in charge of organizing volunteers to hang items, re-bag discarded clothing and coordinate pick up dates with a charity in Dallas that takes our unusable items,” said Lowe.

“So as a board, we were faced with a very difficult decision and we came to the conclusion that it was best to simply close the clothing store during the months of November and December, with hopes that someone will be able to continue this great service to our communities at some point in 2020,” she added.

If and when they are able to reopen the clothing store, they are going to need clothing donations, but until further notice they are asking people to please not leave any donations, clothing or other items, at their back door or in the drop off box. The public will be notified when the store re-opens.

Begun in 1981, The Marlow Samaritans, a United Way Agency today, has grown tremendously and is financial dependent on the surrounding communities, churches, private and cooperate donations in order to fulfill other areas of the organization.

“Although the clothing store was free to anyone, the remaining areas of service – Food Bank and Emergency Needs – could not exist without the generous donations that support our endeavors to help families who find themselves in unpredictable situations, needing medications, or in need of support to help feed their families,” said Lowe.

“Most all of us have found ourselves in a place where we just needed a little help to get through the month and that’s what we feel our calling is and we seek financial partners who will “Help Us, Help Others,” she continued.

Lowe continued to stress that ONLY the clothing store will be closed – the food bank and emergency needs portions of the Marlow Samaritans will continue as usual.