Threads, Hope & Love has been in business for several years, beginning in a church in 2009 when 4 women and their pastor had a calling into the mission of giving clothing and other things to the needy. The calling was to not ask residency or income. We believe in our hearts that need comes from most income levels at one time or another.
During our first year at Crossroads United Methodist Church in Washington, IL, we had 2 giveaways and had over 350 people at each. We realized that the need was so much more than we ever expected. In 2010 we decided to become a mission company governed by many area churches with the same focus. 2010 was spent going from church to church giving clothing to people and then packing it all back up, returning it to our home church and then planning the following month. It was a tremendous amount of work.
The end of 2010, we were offered 5,000 square foot of space in a warehouse with offices included. We did very well there for nearly 2 years at $1per month rent plus utilities. Then we had to make a decision with the owners to buy the space or pay rent we simply couldn't afford at that time. The search began for help. S.C.O.R.E. of Peoria Illinois stepped in to teach us how to create a capital campaign to acquire funds to purchase our own property. We felt this was God's perfect timing for us to make a major step in our community. After months of searching, we made an offer on an old meat locker that was incredibly run down. We were able to locate a temporary facility to continue our mission as we renovated our future home. We purchased the building in March of 2013 and the renovation began immediately. A man that owns his own renovation company stepped out to work for us for the next 10 months plus to make the perfect space for Threads, Hope & Love.
2013 was a very difficult year for the mission as we worked as best we could in a different location and the renovation was going on ½ mile away. Churches fed the group of men and women that stepped up to dedicate their lives to making this possible. They worked long and hard 6 days per week in the extreme cold, then the extreme hot of summer.
Then the unthinkable happened to our community. November 17th, the tornado. Our new building suffered a small amount of roof damage and our temporary site was fine. We began receiving semi loads of supplies for victims immediately. We were hauling our own stock out the back door and into semi trailers on our new property as fast as the supplies were being delivered to the front. Cases of water, diapers, shampoo, toothbrushes thousands and thousands of things to stock for our community. The shock, the stories and the tears were constant and all we could do was pray and try to give them whatever they needed to help them from day to day as they experienced the worst time of their lives. We worked with churches to make sure everyone had what they needed to make Christmas happen for these children.
We moved into our new building at Christmas 2013 and tried to figure out how to set up into what was going to be such a big comfortable space for us. But with 4 semis of extra supplies (and it continued to come into town) and our own merchandise . We quickly set up our clothing giveaway area and a tornado relief site in the storage room too. We can do whatever God wants us to do as we continue to be His hands and feet. The community is changing, people's needs are changing and we are there. We will always be here for Washington and the 50+ communities that rely on us to assist in times of need. We try to give people one less thing to worry about by giving them clothing for their growing children and other needs to keep them confident that things can get better.
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Our Mission: Opening our hearts and hands to clothe those in need and help those in crisis.