Keene Excessive College principal Chris Taylor and his spouse, Keene Elementary College pre-kindergarten instructor Ashley Taylor, had mentioned for a number of years the methods they hoped to assist and provides again to their group as soon as they retired.
Nevertheless, because of Keene ISD Superintendent Ricky Stephens and the district, Taylor’s hopes had been realized sooner moderately than later. ”
“This appears to be like implausible!” KISD Summit Management Academy Principal Julie McKintosh stated upon getting into Cost it Ahead for the primary time. “It appears to be like unbelievable”.
Fantastically designed and arranged as it’s, Cost it Ahead exudes the vibe of a go to to a retail clothes retailer moderately than a thrift retailer, with the principle distinction being that the merchandise is free.
McKintosh joined different KISD officers and Keene Metropolis workers Wednesday morning to try the soon-to-be-opened clothes closet.
Others commented that Cost it Ahead appears to be like and seems like a boutique.
“That is the concept,” stated Chris Taylor. “We did not need it to really feel like going to Goodwill or one thing. We needed it to be a pleasant, cozy and enjoyable place to go. “
Cost it Ahead occupies an workplace on the KISD administrative campus.
“These buildings had been initially used for our various college,” Stephens stated. “However that campus has since moved, so we’ve got these buildings nonetheless right here and obtainable.”
Julie Taylor praised Stephens for supporting her and her husband’s imaginative and prescient.
“My husband and I’ve been interested by this for a very long time,” Julie Taylor stated. “We’re each in our fifth 12 months at KISD and through that point we’ve got observed that there’s a nice want for clothes for kids and adults.
“We introduced up the concept to Mr. Stephens final spring and he instantly jumped on the concept and recommended this place for us to open the shop.”
The Taylors spent the following month pitching a retailer.
The Cost it Ahead exhibit space occupies two rooms within the annex constructing, one for boys and the second for ladies. Bins of clothes and different gadgets but to be sorted occupy a storage space.
“They got here right here they usually mounted this place rather well,” Stephens stated. “Working throughout the scorching a part of the summer time and far of that point earlier than the air-con labored.”
Youngsters are the focus, however all are welcome.
“From infants to adults and everybody in between,” Julie Taylor stated.
The aim is to assist as many Keene and space residents in want as attainable, Stephens added.
“So if mother comes along with her youngsters to search out garments for them and sees one thing that she additionally wants, she is welcome. We simply need this to be one thing to assist the group. “
The necessity is nice.
“We’re 82 p.c socioeconomically deprived, so there may be positively an incredible want right here,” Stephens stated.
Julie Taylor, scanning the bountiful show areas, stated that she and her husband really feel grateful and blessed.
“I used to be fearful if we might have sufficient garments earlier than opening,” stated Julie Taylor. “Really, we’ve got not but communicated to the general public that we’re looking for donations. However because of donations from [KISD staff] and relations and pals, we’ve got sufficient to start out. “
Greater than anticipated, Chris Taylor stated.
“We began planning to have every thing on this room,” stated Chris Taylor. “That is why we painted on this room, we put photos, we put up that mirror that somebody donated from an previous home in Cleburne. However we realized fairly shortly that we had sufficient to make use of each rooms. “
Along with youngsters’s and grownup clothes, a lot of which is new or appears to be like new, a number of items of knickknack and different gadgets have additionally been donated. The Keene ISD charger outfit occupies a nook of the room.
“These are going to be very talked-about with the youngsters we’re interested by,” Julie Taylor stated.
However extra is required.
“As we introduce issues, we divide them by dimension to present us an thought of what we’ve got and what we nonetheless want,” Julie Taylor stated. “Primarily we’re wanting garments and sizes for highschool children proper now and sneakers are one thing we will all the time put on as nicely.”
“We will all the time use extra gear from the KISD workforce as a result of that might be in style. Additionally, we hope to get costume shirts and fits. That approach, if dad and mom or older siblings are attempting to get jobs, we will have them obtainable. And we’re additionally interested by the necessity for get together clothes. “
Chris Taylor added that donations of diapers, private hygiene merchandise and different requirements are additionally welcome.
“We additionally settle for financial donations,” Julie Taylor stated. “On the one hand, socks and underwear are all the time an incredible necessity and we wish to purchase them new and attempt to all the time have them readily available.”
With KISD courses resuming on August four, the plan is to open Cost it Ahead quickly.
“We’re interested by July 31 and August 1 to permit the kids and their dad and mom to return and get garments and issues earlier than the college 12 months begins,” stated Julie Taylor.
In any other case, Cost It Ahead might be by appointment.
“Folks can go to our Fb web page, Cost it Ahead, which may even have contact numbers, and we’ll set a time for them to return right here. And we could have different open home occasions, most likely one earlier than it will get chilly once more and one earlier than it begins to get scorching so folks can get the garments they want earlier than the season modifications.
“Individuals who wish to donate also can go to our Fb web page or name the faculties or the administration workplace.
“Actually, at this level, we wish to unfold the phrase about what we’re doing and that we’d like donations and we hope it will take off.”
Julie Taylor stated she additionally printed enterprise playing cards.
“As a result of I assumed it will be a good suggestion to go to the yard and yard gross sales and depart them a card,” Julie Taylor stated. “That approach, if they’ve any leftover garments afterward, they may contemplate donating it and due to the cardboard, they will know the place it is going and that it may an excellent trigger.”
Entry to Cost it Ahead should not be an issue generally, added Chris Taylor. Along with the Taylors, the college nurses and each KISD principal have keys to the constructing.
Stephens, throughout Wednesday morning’s ribbon-cutting ceremony for the set up, thanked the Taylors and requested the group for assist.
“For the previous three months I’ve had conversations with Chris and Ashley about their imaginative and prescient of opening a free garments closet,” Stephens stated. “And, as soon as we reduce the ribbon, I would like everybody to take a tour and see all of the onerous work that they’ve put into making this a actuality. I really like the identify the Taylors got here up with, Cost it Ahead, which performs on the pay it ahead idea of serving to others who’re much less lucky or extra in want.
“And personally, I wish to say how proud I’m of the Taylors and all they’ve performed right here to create a pleasant place for youths and households to return and get very nice garments.”
With that, Stephens urged everybody to scrub their wardrobes and donate garments they not want or need.
“This is without doubt one of the cool issues about our group and KISD,” Stephens stated. “It is that our group does this by meals banks and different alternatives to assist neighbors in want and that this group actually loves each other and that Cost it Ahead might be one other wonderful means that KISD may give again.”