Howell County News/ Amanda MendezHowell County News/ Amanda MendezHowell County News/ Amanda Mendez

Ministry on the move

Christian Women's Connection has taken over the use of the old Town and Country building on Fifth St. in Mountain View. The main work of their ministry is hosting clothing giveaway events. The volunteers report their most recent event provided free used clothing for 2,433 individuals from 583 families. They estimate they gave away over 20,000 individual articles of clothing. With the new space, the hope is to increase the number of giveaways each year. 
“If it were not for God, we would not be able to do any of this,” said Pat Phipps, member of the group. “It’s all through His blessings.”
What began as a small ministry in the Mountain View Church of God quickly grew, as it was obvious the need is great. CWC does not have any requirements for the clothing giveaway events. Anyone in need, regardless of income or where they live, can attend the events and choose as many items of clothing as they need. 
For the last couple years, the group has operated out of the parsonage house of the church, but with each giveaway event bigger than the last, they needed to expand. 
The president of their Board, Monty Williamson, contacted the former Town and Country building’s owner. The group was granted permission to use the space, if they pay the utilities. To finance this new expense, a section of the space will be set up like a retail store with an inventory of donated secondhand items for sale. 
The volunteers of CWC have worked very diligently to suit the former grocery store to their needs. From scrubbing the floors to putting up partition walls to the mountains of donated clothing and items, their passion for their ministry is plain to see. Rows of tables and racks and tubs serve as the workspace for sorting and organizing the donated clothing items, with room to grow.
CWC accepts donations of “anything you put on your body,” Phipps said. These items in sizes newborn to adults’ 5x are available at the giveaway events. When the clothes come in, the volunteers go through every piece. Every item is evaluated for damage and stains, for missing buttons or malfunctioning zippers. What needs to be washed is washed. 
Nothing that is donated goes to waste, the group said. Odd socks go to the Girl Scouts to live again as dog toys. Clothing too damaged to give away is recycled into rags and rugs. 
The retail space will be open Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. These are also the hours the group accepts donations. 
The group is busy settling into their new location, and the next clothing giveaway event is TBD. However, certain volunteers are available any time for the day or night for emergency donations of clothing. For these emergency needs, there are also no requirements. If you are in need of clothing, call 417-932-5207 or 417-860-6232. 
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