Totally Free Clothes Store Raises Funds to Keep Doors Open
Each week, the Totally Free Clothes store distributes more than a thousand items.
The store, which opened in Paul Ditz’s law office in 2018, has grown steadily and is now located next to Food Lion on South Lafayette Street.
As the name suggests, everything is free and run by volunteers.
The rent, on the other hand, is not, and a garage sale for the benefit of the store is held at the end of the month.
The garage sale will take place from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, August 20 in the parking lot in front of the store located at 1515 S. Lafayette St.
“Every month we have to beg for cash donations to pay rent and utility bills,” said Melanie Burr, who helps run the store. “We would like to get grants, but it takes time.”
She said between 1,300 and 1,500 pieces of clothing and accessories come out each week.
“It tells me there’s a great need for the store, so I want to do everything I can to keep it open,” Burr said. “People are struggling enough to feed their families. At least it gives them some hope.
She said they were still accepting donations for the yard sale and accepting furniture, household items, garden equipment, crafts, toys, jewelry and more.
“We’ve already had an overwhelming response,” Burr said.
Donations can be brought to the store and larger items can be picked up by calling 704-692-2389.
The catalyst for Totally Free Clothes Store came from Ditz’s work as a criminal defense attorney.
Ditz often provided clothing for his clients to wear during their trial. After these trials, he would be asked if they could keep the clothes he had bought for them. He eventually opened a small store in his law office and what started out as a few shelves of clothes became the current store.