Special Clothing Pop-Up Inspires Hope After Crisis


Calvary Staff and Broken Chains volunteers at the pop-up

One month ago, an explosion next to Calvary Women’s Services’ main housing program displaced 36 women from the space they had grown to call home. While residents and staff were safely evacuated, our building suffered substantial water and smoke damage and has been forced to temporarily close its doors to women seeking a safe, warm place to live.

In response to the crisis, Broken Chains visited Calvary’s Reach Up program site and hosted a clothing pop-up, affording the women who were impacted by the fire a free shopping day to help recover clothing and other essential items that were lost. A nonprofit that facilitates the reentry of women, men, and young adults into society after being released from prison, Broken Chains had previously volunteered with Calvary last year.

After going through a traumatic experience caused by the explosion, women at Calvary’s programs were able to recenter and enjoy a shopping experience thanks to the Broken Chains.

“Despite the losses and destruction, there’s still joy and hope,” Kennetta Calloway, founder and Executive Director of Broken Chains, shared about the experience of hosting a pop-up. “Broken Chains was honored to spend the day with the ladies at Calvary Women’s Services.”

Women were able to shop for new and gently used clothing including work attire, winter coats, and dresses at the pop-up boutique while chatting with the three volunteers from Broken Chains. “Broken Chains had it all… loungewear, work outfits, purses, and shoes and everyone who came left with something!” said Sarah Cannington, Community Engagement Manager at Calvary. “It was a joy to see women shopping and picking out clothes for one another.”

“[The women] loved being able to sort through the wide variety of items,” Jasmine Shackelford, Assistant Program Manager at Reach Up, explained following the event. “It was really nice to see them benefitting from community giving… and residents expressed being happy that Broken Chains could provide them with some needed essential items.”

Jasmine praised the success of the event saying, “I’m glad I got to witness it.”

Thank you, Broken Chains, for empowering women through this crisis and beyond!

Interested in supporting Calvary Women’s Services as we Restore Hope following the January 18th explosion on Marion Barry Avenue?

The two best ways to support women at Calvary are:

  • Donating gift Visa or Uber cards through our Amazon Wish List so women are able to purchase essential items on an as-needed basis and help offset the cost of transportation to and from alternative housing locations.
  • Contributing to our Restoring Hope campaign. Your donation ensures women experiencing homelessness have access to everything they need to achieve their goals. Your ongoing support is more important than ever as we work to reopen Good Hope transitional housing as quickly as possible!
  • Please note, Calvary Women’s Services is not able to accept clothing or other physical donations due to limited storage capacity. Contact Sarah Cannington (scannington@calvaryservices.org) with questions or visit our donations page to learn more.

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