‘Tis the season for holiday shopping.
For some families, though, budgets are tight. A new community project aims to help.
“Hanging In,” a free children’s clothing closet initiative started last year by Camden County resident Christina Bijeau, set up shop for the first time in Brunswick on Tuesday at the Head Start preschool.
Hanging In offers gently used children’s clothes to families that may need help.
“It’s free gifts for families in need,” Bijeau said. “My vision was to come to them, because a lot of people don’t have a car or the gas money to go to the resources we have.”
All items in the store are donated. On the shelves and racks Tuesday were clothing, toys, books and more. Parents perused the items while their children played with some of the toys or napped in strollers.
Bijeau aims to create a nice store atmosphere, to make the shopping experience pleasant for the families.
“We try to make it as ‘boutique-ish’ as possible,” she said.
The store also offered gift wrap and bows for parents to wrap up their gifts before the holidays.
Around 75 families signed up for Tuesday’s event.
Bijeau first saw the need for this kind of initiative while working for Camden County’s Head Start. She said the project has grown more quickly than she expected during its first year.
“The very first one, they cleared every rack,” she said. “I had nothing left.”
Bijeau has set up stores throughout the first year. A voucher system has been created, so that parents can sign up, bring their vouchers to the store while it’s open and shop for gifts.
Bijeau relies on donations to stock each store. Those wishing to donate can learn more on the project’s Facebook page, called “Hanging In.”