Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Faith in style at new store

This spring, Tuscaloosa will welcome a different kind of clothing store to the community.

Garments of Praise, a non-profit organization focused on providing clothes for the needy and sharing the love of Jesus, will offer a unique shopping experience and free clothing to its customers.

The idea for the store began last year with University of Alabama students Janie Parker and Lindsey Lowe.

Parker, a sophomore majoring in elementary education said, “Recently, I have become convicted that there are hurting people in the world that Christ called me to care for. My heart is to do more to actively impact the kingdom of God for His glory.”

Parker said she wants to focus less on her own needs and comforts and more on those of her bothers and sisters in Christ. She said that although she is not in a position to give financially to those in need, she can give what she does have: clothes.

“I know that God can use you wherever you are,” Parker said, “And so me, being a poor college student, thought that this was a way that I could take something that we all have in excess and give to those who absolutely need them.”

Lowe, a sophomore at Alabama majoring in journalism, said that when Parker approached her with the idea, she knew it was something that she could help with.

“After I started looking, I realized that I was holding on to lots of clothes that I didn’t even wear,” Lowe said. “I talked to my roommates and found out that I wasn’t the only one, and the idea grew from there.”

Parker and Lowe plan to open the store at Vineyard Community Church behind Central High School in Tuscaloosa. The two said that the space they are looking at is in need of some refurbishing, but they hope to open the store soon.

Both agreed that they didn’t want to open another clothes pantry, but rather a place that the underprivileged could come to feel loved and valued.

“We are going to set up our facility as if it were a boutique,” Parker said. “We want it to be a welcoming environment with coffee and treats. Through our service, we hope to provide for the needy with the evidence of God’s grace.”

Lowe said that in order to get the organization up and running, they are going to need help from the Tuscaloosa community. Joe Fair, a Tuscaloosa native currently working at the Mercedes-Benz plant, has offered just that.

“When I heard what the organization was doing, I knew I wanted to be a part of it,” Fair said. “Donating clothes was a very easy way for me to both clean out my closet and have a hand in helping those in need right in my area.”

Fair said that donating to the organization was simple and that once he decided to donate, getting in contact with someone to take his clothes didn’t take long.

For more information on how to donate to Garments of Praise, contact Janie Parker at [email protected] or Lindsey Lowe at [email protected].

More to Discover