Alicia's Closet is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt nonprofit organization, serving the foster care community in Central Ohio (Columbus/Franklin County and surrounding areas) and Northwest Ohio (Fremont/Sandusky County and surrounding areas). Our free stores provide infant to young adult sized clothing, shoes, coats, diapers & wipes, baby accessories and other essentials, at no cost to families.
Our Columbus location also offers additional programming such as such as support groups, respite/parents' day out events, monthly meetup events, seasonal programs and a mentoring & outreach program for former foster youth.
We are happy to serve foster, kinship & reunified families (those who have been reunited after children have been in foster care), as well as former foster youth. We are proponents of family preservation, and family restoration, whenever possible. We believe that building relationships and supporting the entire family are integral to the heart of foster care. We also believe that love is a verb - Alicia's Closet exists to support the foster care community through action, both children and their families & caregivers. Our mission encompasses Colossians 3:12-14: "...Clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience...And over all these virtues, put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity."
By supplying much needed items and supports to those who have been affected by foster care, we hope to help create a sense of comfort, normalcy and dignity during a very difficult, uncertain time. In the process, we also hope to create genuine connections and provide ongoing support to families/caregivers.
As foster/adoptive parents ourselves, we understand firsthand the needs that exist within the foster care community. After becoming acclimated to life as foster parents in 2017, it quickly became apparent that tangible resources and other supports are a constant need, and thus, Alicia's Closet (named after our eldest daughter) was born.
We are a family run organization and our "why" is two-fold. My personal desire to serve the foster care community began long ago, at the influence of my (late) father. As a social worker, he was passionate about investing in the lives of at-risk youth, particularly teens aging out of the foster care system. He spent much of his career working to support, mentor and serve as an advocate for this population of youth, who typically receive little to no support. I hope to carry on his work and legacy through Alicia's Closet. The second part of our "why" - our children! They are an integral part of this organization; not only do they help sort and fold clothing, but they truly understand our mission as they have been in the shoes of the children we serve.
- Maya Ward, Alicia's Closet Founder