by Stephanie Baker
The Johnson County Youth Coalition is a 100 percent volunteer-based organization dedicated to giving school age children access to clothing and basic needs. The organization supports Lamar, Clarksville, Westside, and Oark school districts in addition to MAC Industries, Forrester-Davis, and Ozark Rape Crisis Center, according to Monica Price, who founded the non-profit in 2017.
“There are children that fall through the cracks and we want to make sure they have the clothing and basic items they need to stay in school and become successful. When we have successful children, our community succeeds,” said Price.
The Coalition relies on donations from the community. In 2022, the organization collected and distributed just over 30,000 items to children and families in the community and is on track to significantly surpass that number in 2023.
“All of the schools in Johnson County have 70-100 percent of students receiving free and reduced lunches. That is a good marker of the need in our community,” said Price.
The organization’s most needed items are shoes, socks, underwear, and coats in all sizes, to help in providing clothing to children in grades K-12. New toiletries are also sought after with deodorant, shampoo, conditioner and feminine hygiene products topping the list of most needed items in school care closets, according to Price.
For the full story, see the November 22 edition of The Graphic, found online or in businesses throughout Johnson County.