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Tallmadge -- Harmony Baptist Church and First Church of God are sponsoring clothing donation sheds outside their buildings.
St. Pauly Textile, a family-owned company based in upstate New York which distributes used clothing worldwide, installed the sheds at both churches June 26.
St. Pauly accepts useable clothing, shoes, sneakers, belts, purses, linens, blankets, curtains, drapes and stuffed animals. The sheds allow the community to drop off any of these items for donation at any time.
"We always get a ton of clothing donated," Alex Hillis, regional growth coordinator at St. Pauly Textile, said. "People really respond in a positive way to what we do, and we really get a lot of clothing donated everywhere that we do this."
St. Pauly distributed more than 60 million garments to about 7.5 million people throughout the world in 2013. The organization currently has over 900 drop-off sheds in seven states and works with different churches and non-profit organizations.
The churches receive 4 cents for every pound of clothing collected, and some donations will be used in Harmony's Helping Hands clothing giveaway ministry. Harmony's Helping Hands was created in 2011 in order to reach out to the community.
"I think it's [donation sheds] going to be a big help to us," the Rev. Bernard Christy said. "We've had a big response to people dropping off clothing, and I feel like that's just going to add to the capability of the shed."
Director of Harmony's Helping Hands Bernard Christy Jr. said the sheds will increase donations because they provide a secure and large area for drop-offs. The organization takes the donations it needs, and St. Pauly Textile donates the rest.
Pastor Josh Deeter said all funds received from the donation sheds go back to the community. Collected money will go straight to the First Church of God's food pantry that feeds about 500 people each month.
"We're excited about the sheds because it's another source of income for our food pantry," Deeter said. "They [food pantry] operate solely on donations and funds that are raised. No one makes a dime to operate that. And so it's a good opportunity for them to have another source of income. It's also a good opportunity for us, just as people, to be recycling our clothes instead of throwing them out."
The sheds not only help people within the community and worldwide, but they help keep clothing out of landfills as well. The donation sheds will stay outside each church until further notice.
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