Since 1984, Clothes For Kids has been helping meet the clothing needs of low income students in Snohomish County.
The Lynnwood-based non-profit organization provides a full school wardrobe – including underwear, socks, and shoes – in a “retail store” environment at no charge.
Clothes For Kids is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year. An anniversary gala and auction will be May 29 at the Future of Flight Aviation Center at Paine Field.
Program Manager Nancy Laird-Burris started as a volunteer for the organization.
1. What is your job title and what do you do?
My title is Program Manager and I am responsible for the daily operations of Clothes For Kids. I recruit, interview, train volunteers, manage the Coins For Kids fundraiser, buy clothing, and do outreach at community events. There is much more I do behind scenes.
2. How long have you been working in this occupation?
I started as a volunteer over 10 years ago. After four years of volunteering, I was hired as the Program Manager.
3. What is the best part of your job?
Working with the families. The kids get really excited when they find a cool pair of new shoes, trendy jeans, a warm coat. Kids can select fashionable items from our retail clothing shop. The parents get even more excited when they are assured the clothing and shoes are free. The students actually get to shop as if they were at the mall.
4. If you could use three words to describe your job, what would they be?
Worthwhile, challenging, gratifying
5. What are the qualities needed to be successful in your job?
Organizational skills, compassion, multitasking, time management, and the ability to comprehend harsh realities of the world.
6. Anything else you want readers to know?
I have lived in Snohomish County since 1983 and I was unaware of how much the community cared. Once I started volunteering at Clothes For Kids, I experienced the generosity of our Snohomish County Community. I want the families who need our resources to know we are here to help and the community to know we need their financial and clothing donations to be able to continue our mission of providing free clothing to low income students in Snohomish County.