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Coats, jeans, shirts and much more

By WESLEY REMMER

Staff writer

SkillsUSA members at Bremerton High School are working hard to help those in need. The SkillsUSA Bremerton chapter recently organized “Clothes 4 Kids,” a clothing drive designed to provide clothes for foster children in and around the Bremerton area.

And “Clothes 4 Kids” is just the latest effort made by the BHS SkillsUSA members to impact the lives of their fellow Bremerton community members.

Last year the organization sent Valentine’s Day packages to Bremerton troops stationed away from their families, and it also has put together other care packages for other service members who are away from home.

“We can help people, so we may as well,” said member Krystle Membrere, a BHS senior who helped organize the clothing drive.

SkillsUSA is a national organization composed of more than 15,000 sections and 54 state and territorial associations. Professional instructors educate and train students in technical, skilled and service occupations to prepare them for life after school. The BHS chapter currently has upwards of 20 members, all of whom contribute to organizing projects.

“Clothes 4 Kids” started on Jan. 5 as an attempt to put clothes on the backs of foster children who don’t have families to support them.

Acceptable donations range anywhere from shampoo and conditioner to shoes and coats.

“Even a new pair of socks helps,” Membrere said, adding that “every little bit helps.”

SkillsUSA members hope the clothing drive will encourage people to put their extra clothes to good use.

“We can actually use those ugly clothes your grandma gave you for Christmas,” joked Felicity Jaramillo, another SkillsUSA member who worked with Membrere to organize the drive.

Jaramillo said the joy of making other people happy inspires her to work hard.

“It’s heartwarming to see donations go to people in need,” she said.

Proceeds from “Clothes 4 Kids” will go to the Community and Family Services Foundation and to the Kitsap Foster Care Association. From there, the clothes will be distributed to foster children.

There are three donation stations in Bremerton: Kitsap Credit Union, 155 Washington Ave.; Kitsap Regional Library, 1301 Sylvan Way; and Bremerton High School, 1500 13th St.

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