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Clothing, food giveaways planned over this next week

by Tia Lyons | November 16, 2021 at 4:00 a.m.

First Baptist Church-Cordell is hosting two giveaways to help those in need during this holiday season.

A clothing giveaway will be held at 9 a.m. Saturday in the First Baptist Church Family Life Center, which is across the street from the church, 620 Cordell.

The giveaway is a part of First Baptist's Clothes Closet, a community mission project that was launched in 2020.

The program has been on hiatus for much of the year while church members ironed out the logistics of storing inventory for the Clothes Closet.

The clothing giveaway is open to the public and will include new and gently worn clothes and shoes in a variety of sizes for men, women and children.

Janis Van Hook, a member of the organizing committee, said plenty of new clothes are available, particularly for women, explaining that the church received a large donation from the Classic Dress Shop, the former women's clothing store in Smackover.

The business closed its doors in February 2020 after 50 years.

"They gave us what they weren't able to sell and we still have lots of new stuff from them," Van Hook said.

In the event of inclement weather, Van Hook said the clothing giveaway will be moved underneath the carport on the south side of First Baptist Church.

The church will also host a Thanksgiving food box giveaway at 9 a.m. on Nov. 22 in the Fellowship Hall of First Baptist-Cordell.

The entrance to the Fellowship Hall is underneath the carport on the south side of the church.

Van Hook said the church has been hosting the Thanksgiving box giveaway for several years.

"They were doing this mission long before I even started with the Kitchen Committee and I joined about five years ago," Van Hook said.

The boxes are typically packed with non-perishable foods that can be used to make a traditional Thanksgiving Day meal.

Van Hook explained that the food for the boxes comes from a local food bank.

Within the past few years, First Baptist has given away an average of 50 Thanksgiving boxes to local families annually.

"It varies, what's in it. It varies and it's first come, first served. We will pass out boxes until we run out," Van Hook said, adding that the giveaway is limited to one box per household.

Photo identification is required to receive a box.

"It's only because we have to fill out paperwork. We get our items from a food bank and we have to keep records for who gets a box," Van Hook explained.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) safety measures will be in effect during the giveaways. Participants are asked to wear face masks and socially distance upon entering the First Baptist facilities.

For more information, call Van Hook at 870-918-2706.

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