The clothing bank helps thousands of APS students | Popgen Tech

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Julia Fitzsimmons, community school coordinator at Lowell Elementary School, noticed in the fall that one of her students wasn’t playing with the rest of the kids at recess.

“He was struggling with his shoes, they were worn to the point where he was limping in pain,” she said.

Fortunately, Fitzsimmons knew a way to brighten the boy’s day: She contacted Erin Lew, special projects coordinator for the Albuquerque Community Clothing and School Supply Bank.

Together, the women were able to place an urgent order to provide the child with a new pair of shoes by the end of the day.

News Radio KKOB is covering the Good News program today.

The clothing bank has been operating in the APS building for six years and is run mainly by volunteers with a few permanent staff members.

It works for all ages in the county – kindergarten through high school – providing school supplies, hoodies, coats, socks, underwear, shoes and Goodwill clothing vouchers to children in need.

According to APS enrollment statistics, 67% of students in the district receive free lunches in the 2022-23 school year. That means more than half of the population lives in households with incomes below 130% of the federal poverty level, or an estimated $29,940 per year for a family of three.

As of December 1, the clothing bank has helped a total of 2,200 students since the beginning of the school year. This includes the distribution of 1,800 pairs of underwear, 1,920 packs of socks (six pairs each), 1,600 hoodies, 1,822 coats and over 1,800 clothing vouchers.

To learn more about volunteering for the program or to donate to the cause, visit aps.edu/community/clothing-bank.

“The Good News Files” is a collaboration between KOAT-TV, News Radio KKOB and the Journal, with each organization taking turns featuring stories that bring a smile.

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