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Clothing bank celebrating 15 years

The Donald Loomis Clothing Bank in Buckley is celebrating 15 years with an open house from 3 to 5 p.m. Feb. 27.

There will be a short program at 4 p.m.

Sheila Smith started the clothing bank and named it for her father Donald, who was born in Buckley in 1938 and attended White River schools. He was a volunteer firefighter and emergency medical technician for 25 years and a member of the Buckley Eagles for more than 30 years, including past president. He worked at Rainier School since 1967 and raised six children in Buckley.

It’s when he died in 1993 from cancer, that Smith started formulating plans for the clothing bank and opened its doors in 1995. That first year, the bank served 20 people.

Last year, the bank served 637, all who live within the White River and Carbonado school districts. In 2004, when the bank was moved it its current location on the Glacier Middle School campus, an adult clothing section was added.

The clothing bank provides kids clothes, new socks and underwear and school supplies.

“Our biggest donor is Elk Head Brewery,” Smith said. “They collect from the community. Thanks to the community.”

Smith said the bank is backed by sponsor Buckley Kiwanis, and regular supporters like the White River PTAs, Mary Dale Brooks, the Enumclaw Masons, the Presbytarian church, the Eagles, Foothills United Methodist women, Lutheran Ladies and many others.

“Donations from the community of clothes,” Smith said. “We can’t do it without everyone.”

Volunteers like Julia Wentz, Donna Luchs, Cecilia Endicot, Nancy Loomis and LuAnne Hedges also are a big part of the program.

Smith said there is no need to prove income. Visitors can use the clothing bank three times per school year.

It is open from 1 to 3 p.m. Wednesdays and 10 a.m. to noon, the first and third Saturday of each month; and 6 to 8 p.m. the first Tuesday of each month. The bank is closed on school closures and holidays.

Donations are accepted during regular hours. For information, call Smith at 360-825-5696.

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