By Lindsay Doty
Buying a warm coat or a pair of new pants for a school-aged child in need has become an annual tradition for a group of local realtors. Every December, the Hendricks County Division of MIBOR, an organization representing Central Indiana’s Realtors, participates in Clothe-a-Child, a shopping charity event.
The group fundraises all year to build-up to the marathon shopping spree in December at JCPenney where they buy clothing for hundreds of needy Hendricks County school-aged children.
This year, they raised $44,046 and will provide clothing for around 300 kids.
“I love being able to do this for families on such a large scale because it gives directly back to the community,” said Wendy Buckler, Clothe-a-Child committee chair and realtor with Ploughe Realty Group, Keller Williams Indy Metro West in Avon.
To find the families, the realtors work with school district counselors in Hendricks County to connect with the families who could use assistance.
“Most children and families have a rough time – some with foster children or adopted children, and some even grandparents raising their grandkids, so it is nice to be able to help them with this small gesture,” said Angie Turley, coordinator for the Danville Community School Corporation and loan officer.
“Counselors are super thankful and appreciative to our organization for doing this each year,” said Jennifer Reynolds, coordinator for the Brownsburg Community School Corporation.
The team feels blessed knowing they are helping children from their community.
“It just makes me feel good to know that as mean as kids can be, these kids get to come back from the holiday break with new things like all the other kids. At the end of every shopping day, every single year, the whole committee is physically and emotionally spent in the very best of ways. It is a long emotional day on so many levels. But we can’t wait to do it all over again next year,” adds Buckler, who works with the Mill Creek Community School Corporation.
“We participate in events throughout the year to raise funds to shop for the kids, but the favorite and most rewarding of the year for most is actually shopping for the kids,” adds new committee member Brandy Jones, a realtor at Union Home Mortgage in Avon.
“It makes me feel grateful and blessed,” said longtime committee member Lori Shoemaker, who works at First American Title in Avon.
The shopping event took place on December 10.
To help support Clothe-a-Child. Checks are payable to HCDM, C/O Union Home Mortgage, 7386 Business Center Drive-A, Avon, IN 46123.