Woolwich and Wellesley township families in need will have some new duds to keep them warm after Carla Muller from Baby Charlotte donated more than $7,000 worth of new clothing to the Woolwich Community Health Centre.
The clothes will be distributed in the townships through the Gesundheit Fur Kinder Program as well as the Rural Family Outreach Workers with Carizon Family and Community Services.
Previously operated in Conestogo, Muller’s store is now located in Kitchener. But she’s still eager to give back to her rural community.
“It’s one of those things where the opportunity comes to you because you’re such a small business,” Muller said. “You purchase items and if you don’t sell them in a year you bring them out next year and you don’t sell them. And you think to yourself ‘I’m not marking this down 75 per cent, I’m going to give this to charity.’ It’s excellent clothing, it’s just last season. We make room for some new stuff and what we’ve got goes to a good cause.”
The donated clothing ranges in size from three months up to eight years. They also had some men’s boots, a strange find for a shop that primarily sells clothing for children and pregnant ladies. Muller explains they ordered a shipment of boots for toddlers, but they were accidentally sent in men’s sizes.
“It wasn’t like we had any set amount laid out, we just kind of looked at it and thought it’s a nice grouping of clothes,” Muller said. “There’ll be stuff that matches, siblings can have matching outfits, it’s nice for them to have something new.”
She said they try to do something for charity every year, whether it be supporting a local hospital or donating new shoes through her “Little Souls” campaign, where she gave 116 new pairs of children’s shoes to WCHS in 2011.
“We try to keep giving back to the community if we can wherever we can,” Muller said. “Since we moved to this new location we found quite a bit of clothing that we just didn’t realize that we had such a surplus and we thought there’s got to be a way to make this go to good use. You can put it at half price and you’re pretty much giving it away anyway, so why not also do some good of it.
They’re also gathering donations for the outreach program at the store. They’re encouraging customers to help by purchasing items to fill boxes for the program. Anything purchased as a donation to go in the box will be 40 per cent off.
Muller’s seven-year-old daughter Charlotte, whom the store is named after, was eager to help put together the donations.
“We donate to her school as well, just extra pairs of shoes. If a teacher notices a student’s shoes are in rough shape, we’ll send some along and she always likes picking those out,” Muller said.
Muller opened the store after she got pregnant with Charlotte and found it difficult to find the products she wanted, items that were BPA free and with no phthalates for example, without paying an arm and a leg online.
“She was excited about it because she was there when we put it together,” Muller said. “She thought it was just awesome – ‘I have that skirt and I have those pants and there’s a bunch of kids who’ll have the same clothes as me.’”