Women In Distress Clothing Drive


This photo was taken by Ms.Hixon as the volunteer’s show the donations that were given at the clothing drive for the Women In Distress Thrift Store.

Samantha Goicochea, Editor

The fantastic outpouring of support for this clothing drive was so incredible that there were three carloads full of clothing donations brought to the Women in Distress thrift store by Debra Hixon, one carload coming exclusively from SBHS. This was something essential to advocate the community to ensure the awareness to support survivors of domestic violence.

Women in Distress is the only nationally accredited, state-certified, full-service domestic violence center serving Broward County, Florida. It is an organization that does events by collecting donations from their local thrift store that supports families and women who have been affected by domestic violence.

At this event, women were encouraged to bring clothes they were ready to part with and share them with other women as business outfits can be costly, said Kim Mowatt, a school social worker at SBHS. 

Hixon and Mowatt found out about this through Ruth’s List organization. Since they were both asked to participate, they thought it would’ve been a great idea to have SBHS join in this event too.

“I reached out to Mrs. Brown and asked if SBHS could participate in the clothing drive, and she agreed that it was a great idea,” said Hixon, former magnet coordinator at SBHS. 

The clothing drive was set up by Ruth’s List, an organization dedicated to helping women get elected to office. Hixon recently won a county-wide seat on the Broward School Board. 

“This was an amazing experience that I’m so glad I had the chance to show awareness to,” said Mowatt.

The donation boxes were set up at the Hollywood Rotary Club and were open for dropoff from December 2 to December 18. Then, the clothes were picked up and dropped off at the Women in Distress’s Thrift Store on December 19th, as a group effort from staff members of SBHS. Most donations brought in are usually: women’s clothing, children’s clothing, men’s clothing furniture, new crib mattresses, new toys, and strollers.

They literally will take anything as long as its in good condition and that they believe will help their survivors in need, said Hixon

The donations brought to the store are towards helping women and families build a new life for themselves. Items are also sold to the public, and 100% of the net proceeds support their emergency shelter, counseling and therapy services, and other related programs run by the Women In Distress Organization.

  It was important to me to share this opportunity with the SBHS students, to enable them to share in the community effort, to highlight the need to ensure women in our community have the resources they need to be successful,” said Mowatt.

The Women in Distress thrift store believes their survivors should receive the best treatment, so those who receive services at Women In Distress can shop at the Thrift Store at no cost. Their mission is to stop domestic violence abuse for everyone through intervention, education, and advocacy. 

They do take into consideration their survivors and the families that need these donations by making sure they get what they need even at no cost, said Hixon.

The Women in Distress thrift store centers offer a 24-hour crisis line to provide an environment that’s safe for their survivors to reach out in need of an emergency. They also have 50% off on entire purchases every Wednesday to the public and survivors in store. Their goal is to keep spreading as much awareness and to be a safe place for those to come to them in need.  

 It feels so heartwarming knowing these donations can change someones life or help them with a fresh start, said Mowatt.