Clothing Guild provides new clothing to needy

The Cape Town Clothing Guild will distribute new warm clothing to 37 charities across the peninsula

The Cape Town Clothing Guild, a non-profit organisation that provides clothing to those in need, is gearing up for its 134th collection and distribution event in May.

The volunteer-based organisation, which has been operating for more than a century, collects and distributes new warm clothing and blankets to 37 charities across the peninsula on an annual basis.

They are appealing for donations for their distribution taking place on Tuesday May 16 and Wednesday May 17.

Sarah Brooke, chairwoman of the Cape Town Clothing Guild, said they only collect new clothing.

“This approach ensures that those in need receive high-quality items that will last them throughout the season, and also demonstrates respect for an individual’s worth and dignity through the time and thought given to buying or making a new garment.”

Each year members are asked to buy, sew, crochet or knit a minimum of two articles of winter clothing to donate to the guild. These can be jerseys, babywear, blankets, bed socks, scarves, beanies and others. Alternatively, some members choose to make a cash donation.

This is used to purchase school uniforms, raincoats, pyjamas and tracksuits.

The items are collected by the area coordinators who sort and deliver them to a central collection venue. Over two days, the clothing and blankets are sorted, counted and allocated to the different charities the guild supports.

Last year, the organisation distributed 26 500 new items, which were donated from 22 districts spanning from Durbanville to Camps Bay and Simon’s Town.

Liz Duffell, the area coordinator for Fish Hoek and Noordhoek, reported that the Fish Hoek district had an outstanding year last year, donating 1 166 items and raising R14 450.

“The majority of our members knit and sew or buy new warm clothing or make a cash donation. We have regular groups of women who gather to knit, including the Busy Lizzies of Peers Village and the Anglican Women’s Fellowship of St Margaret’s Church, both of whom donate over 300 knitted items each year,” Ms Duffell said.

The St Kizito Children’s Programme, a Fish Hoek non-profit organisation whose 60 volunteers help some 300 orphans and vulnerable children across the city, received clothing donations from the guild for the first time last year.

“It caused much excitement among our beneficiaries. It is rare for them to receive new clothing, and they usually have to make do with hand-me-downs that are often worn out and too small,” said St Kizito’s office administrator, Sonia McShane.

“Thanks to the guild’s donation of warm clothing, including jerseys, blankets and beanies, we were able to provide our children with essential items just before the cold Cape Town winter began. They deserve all the recognition and support they can get.”

To support the Clothing Guild, become a member or donate two items of clothing, contact Sarah Brooke at 073 236 5048.