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    Clothes Line for Men Offers Remote Services

    March 2, 2022

    The Clothes Line For Men is a satellite of Scranton’s Friends of the Poor initiative, which individuals with the company of a sponsor, can come pick out clothing and hygienic supplies to use for getting back into the workplace. This initiative, facilitated with the support of The University of Scranton’s Center for Service and Social Justice, offers a needed service for men in the Scranton community.  

    University of Scranton coordinator of Local Service & Community Outreach Lynn Gavin said that there is clothing available for men working in all different types of fields. 

    “We offer anything from full suits and belts to Dickies pants and work boots,” Gavin said. “We even offer things such as underwear and socks, which we really need more of.” 

    The Clothes Line also offers fitting rooms for individuals to try things on before walking out, along with complimentary gift bags with each order which include essential items such as razors, socks, underwear and other items. 

    “Those who shop at the Clothes Line for Men do so by filling out an application, which is then approved by us and a sponsor,” Gavin said. “These individuals can then fill out exactly what they are looking for on a sheet and our volunteers will put the order together for them so it is ready for them to pick up.”  

    According to Gavin, the service originally offered in-store shopping hours like a department store, but due to COVID-19 concerns, it had to put that service to a halt. 

    “Sometimes it gets cluttered here with so many bags, but with the help of student volunteers we are able to get organized quickly as new donation bags come in almost daily,” Gavin said. “We were receiving so much stuff, that we had to acquire another house, which, conveniently, is right next door.” 

    Aside from putting together orders, volunteers also assist in going through donation bags that are dropped off on the porch in garbage bags. 

    “I tell my volunteers, 'If you wouldn’t wear it then get rid of it,'" Gavin said.  

    Gavin said she is grateful for the opportunity to take charge of the newly acquired buildings to use for the service just outside of campus on Linden Street across from the University’s Linden apartments. 

    “This is a dream job for me. I have volunteered and done community work my whole life, and after working at the university for 27 years, I think this is perfect,” she said. 

    The concept of the service was developed over eight years ago by a duo of women who used the house to run their operation in giving underprivileged men proper clothing to either get back in the workforce after being in prison or immigrants to the area among other situations according to Gavin. 

    She said that students really seem to enjoy volunteering at the clothesline. Nursing major Abbey Knight ‘23 said that although she has completed the required service hours for her program, this isn’t the end of volunteering for her. 

    “I love it so much I’m going to come back even after my hours are done,” Knight said. 

    Some students are using their opportunity at the Clothes Line for Men to help those in need and bring joy to others. Senior occupational therapy major Erin Grell '22 said those who have the time should volunteer. 

    “As humans, we have an obligation to help each other and bring good into the world,” Grell said. 

    Students who would like to volunteer for The Clothes Line For Men can expect to work in shifts that are flexible for students schedules. As of now, shifts start at 1 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays and end at 3 p.m. The first shift unbags and the second fill orders. 

    For those looking to donate, high-demand items the Clothes Line is looking for include: sneakers, work boots and underwear. The Clothes Line averages around 12-15 orders per week consisting of over 15 individual items in each order. 

    Other services offered by the Friends Of The Poor at the Clothes Line For Men are arts and crafts and freshly cooked meals and baked goods on-site. 

    University of Scranton students interested in volunteering for Clothes Line For Men can sign up here. 

    Sign-ups are released monthly so keep on the lookout. 

    Community members interested in accessing services offered by the Clothes Line for Men can contact the Friends of the Poor at 570-348-4429 or email clothesline@fotp-ihm.org for more information. 

     

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