The Closet on 54th is a clothing ministry that provides up to ten items of clothing, a pair of shoes, and two non-shoe accessories per month free to the community in need. The ministry was originally founded as God’s Closet in April 2015 at College Lutheran Church by SVLC member Leslie Atkins as a tribute to her mother who had passed away the previous year leaving a multitude of clothing.
In August 2016 we relocated to Calvary Evangelical Lutheran Church on 54th to partner with The Cupboard, a food ministry already in operation at Calvary three times a week.
The Closet is open 11am-1:30pm every other Wednesday starting October 12th, and is run by volunteers from Shepherd of the Valley, and members of the community. We generally sort donations on Wednesdays when the Closet is closed.
We average 1200-1500 items of clothing and accessories given to 140-160 people each month. We are partnered with the San Diego Food Bank and operate on a barcode system. Our clients are issued an ID card with a bar code and a case number, then we scan their card and the number of items they receive. They can return the same month if they did not reach the monthly limit the first time.
We are always looking for donations of gently-used clean clothing and accessories (shoes, belts, purses, hats, etc.) and more people interested in volunteering to help. We take men’s, women’s and children’s clothing, but we especially need men’s clothing and shoes.
Donations can be dropped off during The Closet’s or Cupboard’s operating hours or when the Calvary church office is open 8am-noon every day. There is also a collection box in the narthex at Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran Church.
New hours for the Closet! In October we will be changing our days to every other Wednesday starting October 12, to coincide with a day that the Cupboard is also open to distribute food. We think this will increase the number of clients coming to the Closet if they are on site to also pick up food. The Cupboard is open 11am to 2pm, so we will be changing the Closet hours to 11am to 1:30pm so that when the Cupboard closes, the Closet will already be broken down and the racks stored so that we can all leave campus at 2pm. Entrance will be on the north side of the patio instead of the south side of the building as previously. In order for this to work, we need a minimum of two volunteers, one at the door to the Closet room to direct traffic back to the check out and a floater on the patio to keep an eye on the racks and assist at check out. I expect to have sorting/restocking days on alternate Wednesdays when the Closet is closed. We still have a surplus of clothing in storage, so we are holding off on accepting large donations for now. If you would like to help either when we are open or to sort and restock, please contact Leslie Atkins at (619) 916-8780..
Dates for 2022 are: The closet will open on November 9 unless it rains.