God calls us to do different things in our lives.
John and Kathy McCrae of Chambersburg were recently called to help those in need in the community.
The couple has opened Little Daisy’s Closet in their garage, named for their beloved Chihuahua, Daisy (a 9-year-old rescue who was a bit worse-for-the-wear when they adopted her from Biglerville). Little Daisy’s Closet is located at 924 Blanchard Ave.
All of the clothing, shoes, handbags, winter-weather items, household goods, toys, blankets and other items in Little Daisy’s Closet are free to those in need.
“In the summer, God laid it upon my heart,” John explained. “There are a lot of food banks around, but there isn’t much for free clothing. I put feelers out on Facebook in June or July, and there was an overwhelming response.”
John, a native of Shippensburg, added he had been having some health issues, and didn’t feel up to the task of opening the outreach. He is also retired from Patriot Federal Credit Union, and recently stepped down from being Lead Usher at their church, Bethel Assembly of God.
“I really didn’t want to do it,” he said. “I kept saying, ‘I am retired now, and I just don’t think I can do this.’ But, God has other plans for us. After I said that, we actually received like 15 bags of donations. So, I said, ‘OK, Lord, that’s the answer!’”
They also received 100 gift bags for children, which were given to their neighbor involved in missionary work, who was able to quickly distribute them to local children.
Kathy said she told John since Daisy is so sweet, they should name it after her, and they did.
“The community’s support has been outstanding,” John added. “Circle of Love, a Shippensburg-based outreach, donated seven bags of items to us, and community members continue to bring us donations,” he said.
Kathy said they accept donations of household goods, clothing for all ages, shoes, bedding and toys.
“We always need hangers, too,” she noted. “There’s the need for people to donate, and get rid of things, and there’s a need for those who need those items. It’s a win-win!”
“We count solely on the generosity of the community to help the community,” their Facebook page reads.
Anyone wishing to donate items may do so at their convenience. There are signs posted with directions to leave them at the garage door in case they might not be home.
As they spoke of Little Daisy’s mission, one local family dropped off packs of diapers, baby wipes, a rolling clothing rack and other items. Little Daisy’s Closet also has a Wish List on amazon.com that includes shelving.
“Quite a few people have dropped things off after seeing our posts on Facebook,” Kathy said. “Every day there are multiple donations at the door. Chambersburg has a big heart! The Lord opens up where people have room, and we’ve already outgrown this space! Last week, they were lined up in the driveway. We are very happy to be able to meet this need.”
Little Daisy’s Closet is open to anyone in need, and is not income based. They are currently only open from 1 to 4 p.m. each Wednesday. John and Kathy said once they get some more volunteers to help, they will expand the hours.
Kathy said they sort through every item that is donated, and fold all of the clothing and separate them into different categories.
“A lot of the items we have received are brand new, with the tags still on,” she said. “We have only had to get rid of a few items out of everything we have received so far. We don’t want to give anyone something with holes or stains.”
John said one of his friends asked if he was afraid people who aren’t in need are going to take advantage of the outreach?
“It’s a trust thing,” John noted. “If you need it, take it. If you have it, offer it. I will say those who have visited us have been very grateful.”
The McCraes do ask that the items community members take home not be resold on Facebook.
The couple is no stranger to helping the community. During the summer, they host a free outdoor movie experience for area residents. They show two films a month, and give free popcorn and other concessions to attendees. Their Pazers Outdoor Theater is also named for one of their former dogs.
Kathy, who is a former nurse and a retired PennDOT Driver License Center employee, said they are thinking of hosting a Sunday meal for different area families that Little Daisy’s Closet serves in the near future.
“There’s nothing like a home-cooked meal,” she said.
For more information on Little Daisy’s Closet, visit the Facebook page. You can also message Little Daisy’s Closet via Facebook Messenger with questions.
Little Daisy thanks you all for helping her Mom and Dad bring joy to the community!