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SWAP HAND ME DOWNS Recycle Gently Used Fashion for Families
My goal is to change and improve the lives of parents, women, men and children. The mission of Swap hand me downs.com is to inspire and empower learning communities to envision and implement technologies for the purpose of improving their lives.
I am networking globally with projects and organizations so that I can better prepare and help women and their families to gain affordable health insurance and equal paychecks and providing ways and means to improve their career degree choices online since 1999! Don't forget to visit my multimedia blog where I talk a lot about issues we need changed.
A message from the founder:
KIDS OUT-GROW CLOTHING SO FAST. DO YOU HAVE USED CHILD CLOTHING THAT ARE STILL WEARABLE. WOULD YOU LIKE TO SWAP THEM AROUND WITH OTHER FAMILIES - Then why not recycle them here. Why not recycle it right back (the least expensive way possible) among each other. Example: Someone pays 5 dollars or higher for a pair of used 5T jeans at a second hand shop. (Just think about how cheap it is to ship or receive a c.o.d box and think about all that used wearable child clothing you can fit in that box.) PLEASE DON'T throw those clothes out! Make a child happier and swap them around with other families with kids.
Clothes make children feel happy and proper apparel keep children warm. We just felt this was a good program to help families reach out and help each other. Some families are on tight budgets, some families need a change, some families have extra items they don't need, some families need more closet space and some families just don't have enough to go around. JUST A ONETIME CONNECTION AND YOU COULD FIND YOURSELVES SWAPPING FASHION TOGETHER FOR YEARS & YEARS.
For whatever reason you have to join the program - we're sure the kids will enjoy it just as much as you will.
Take the time to use this site. We have been online for years and we are considered the pioneer of swapping and bartering online. Click here
Letter From the Founder of Swaphandmedowns: In the USA we have about 31 million people living here. Did you know that 12 million of them go to bed hungry - Most of them children and in the state of New Jersey 29% of them are children. This is happening in your backyard too.
I opt today to find a corner in my yard and plant a bean seed. I will wait till that seed becomes a crop and I will pass that crop onto my neighbor. I will ask my neighbor to do the same thing next year for his neighbor and so on and so on...
Just water your plant and watch it grow.
This site is design to help parents and children with some help just like plants like water to survive. With a little support from others - Children are going to school dressed a little nicer and the parents are saving funds to pay their bills on time and making new friends.
Plant a bean seed today and pass the crop onto your neighbor. Smile and think about your visit here today. Think about how important that one bean seed is and how it very well can help feed a child or a friend.
Are we losing the American Dream or is it becoming harder to reach?
I am hearing more these days about the ‘2003 American Dream’ becoming harder to reach. Some of these dreams are becoming nightmares.
High paying positions are going down the tubes. Layoffs are forcing parents to apply job interview skills in meeting places. Such as local churches or libraries.
Jobs parents have held for years are now lost.
Job layoffs are on the rise for the last two years. More and more families are losing their homes. I am trying harder than ever to help my swaphandmedowns.com members here to make sure they have decent clothing for job interviews. Nothing is worst than applying for jobs for months and never getting a phone call back.
Nothing is worst than not having clothing that is presentable because a parent needs to feed their children first or pay the rent on time.
Now about www.swaphandmedowns.com
Why this site is so important? Why it is important to help me provide these families with your free used fashions by sticking them in a box and mailing them directly to our families here at www.swaphandmedowns.com?
Please if you or anyone you know of has nice used fashions to donate come by www.swaphandmedowns.com and help these folks. The emails I receive will tell you why www.swaphandmedowns.com is so important.
A few True letters that I receive 24 hours a day:
Sept. 29th 2003
Below are the newest request this week and all names are removed to protect their privacy”. Just reply back and I will help your donate your used fashions directly to families needing them.
Here are their requests:
Jane, I need some help if anyone can. My husband has been out of work now for 8 months and he has been trying to find something but nothing yet and the finances here are getting pretty. I think I know what is his problem and that is the clothes he is wearing for the job interview so if anyone has any men's clothes Simi-dressy that I can get for him to help that would be great the sizes I need are 2x in shirts (solid dark shades if possible blue, black) And pants size 42x32 dress slacks would be nice in black or dark Blue. If anyone can help email me and I will gladly pay the shipping Thanks Jane
Just last night I receive this email from a Mother who finally found our site. She is now a valid member of swaphandmedowns.com
Thank you so much for this program! I have been so stressed trying to figure out how we would get through this winter.
I got laid off from my job about 2 1/2 years ago, while I was pregnant with my twins. At the time we had just bought a house but my husband was still working so I figured we'd be ok. Over the past two 1/2 years however, my husband has been laid off twice and found it difficult to find work again as he is in the Marine reserves and companies were reluctant to hire him, as they are afraid he will be called up to serve our country. In the meantime, my mother who lived two states away finally needed more care than she could get in the small town in which she lived... she has emphysema and heart trouble... so we moved her in with us and I am now taking care of her.
I had found a job, however it required me to work 12 hour days, and I would leave before my children got up and get home after they went to bed. Just when I thought things couldn't get worse... I became pregnant again.
Terra was born this May. She is the most beautiful baby and so very special, however now I have three children in diapers!
I finally found a job that I can work normal hours at, but it is still around $8,000/yr less than I was making. My husband is only working part time so that he can stay home during the day and I can be with them at night when he goes to work.
Each month we are about $500 in the hole from just paying our mortgage, utilities and food. During the time that we were unemployed we ran up over $25,000 in hospital bills. We are going to file bankruptcy as soon as we can manage to scrape together $800. In the meantime, I don't answer my phone because of the bill collectors and I cry myself to sleep every night wondering what is going to happen to us if I can't make the mortgage payment this month. (We are 3 months behind right now). Where am I going to find a place for 7 people to live? (I also have a 12-year-old daughter that I have shared custody of.)
So needless to say, there is no money for clothes. I've tried to find some things at yard sales, but even at yard sale prices most things are out of reach.
Then last week my car broke down... it was $400 to get it fixed and it needs another $600 in work (brakes, cylinders and a new exhaust system).
I tried to go the welfare office for help and was told I "made too much money" for any help. I was so embarrassed! I broke down sobbing. Things have been SO bleak.
As I read through some of your other posts though I was given hope. I have felt so alone and ashamed. I have never had to ask for help, never have not been able to pay my bills on time and I never have been this frightened before. My heart and prayers go out to everyone who is struggling in this horrible time and I realized that I am not alone!
People like you give me hope for the future. The time and dedication you give to help people is an inspiration and makes me ashamed that I have let my own circumstances blind me to the suffering of others.
Anyway... sorry for writing your eyes off.. Here are the sizes we need right now:
Little Boys: 3-4 T girls winter clothes...long sleeved shirts and pants. Socks, and size 8 or 9 boots. I'm pretty sure that their coats from last year will still fit.
I also always need diapers if anyone has any partial bags left over. (I'm trying to get them potty trained, but it doesn't seem to be working.
I could also use some things for my mother. She has to wear what she calls "grannies dresses" because she can't breathe if anything around her neck or waist. She is short (under 5 ft) and weighs about 100lbs. so I think she wears a small or medium. I would be so thrilled to be able to give her some new dresses for Christmas.
I also have some things that I would love for someone to have.
I still have a few very nice maternity things left. They are motherhood maternity dresses size medium.
I also have preemie to 6-month summer things that are still in wonderful shape, receiving blankets, and diaper changing pads.
Thank you so much Jane for your program and I have some little funds set aside to pay for the shipping fees of the free gently used clothing to accept from others.
Now back to the importance of my online program at www.swaphandmedowns.com. Some are calling it the 21st centry trading post on the internet. Some are calling it the best internet technology ever thought of.
Me I call it something I designed to help these families with free gently used fashions. President Jane Sadowy www.swaphandmedowns.com
1/15/03 Family Seven: These Children need clothing I won't go into detail. I know they do. If you would like to ship your used child clothing to this family please email Jane. This family needs a helping friend.
Becca-age 10-girl-size-8-needs jeans and size10 in tops. Jenna-age 9-girl-size-7-needs shorts Olivia-age 6-girl-size-6x-needs jeans and shorts and tops Heather-age 22 months-girl-size 24 months-needs all clothes. and size 5/12-6 shoes. Haydon-age 10 months-girl-size 12 months-needs all clothes and size 3 shoes.
It could happen to anyone at anytime: Job lay-offs, illnesses, credit debts, high interest rates, high rents, loss of a spouse. It could happen to your own.
What is Middle - Low class income. 20,000.00 /29,000.00. Father's are truck drivers, etc. and Mothers are being Mothers. Below are letters we receive asking for some kind of help to receive child apparel. Families and Crisis: (Letters are intact as written to us and privacy protected)
Family Six 10/01/02
Hello Dear Jane,
I am a mother of four daughters’. We live in Okla. My husband's been employed for 22 years at his job with no benefits, over time... and I don't see much of a prosperous future for us. I have three children left at home to raise, along with a grandson. Times have been hard for us for many years. We live off of my husband's check from week to week. We don't qualify for food stamps, but my children’s medical is free thanks to the fact that we fall within the poverty level for sooner care. When we pay our weekly bills we are left with 50.00 a week to last till next pay day. We live a quite humble life style. We spend our money wisely, but it's just enough to survive through the week on, leaving no money for clothing, shoes...
My 11-year-old grandson has been living with us since birth due to the fact that his mother has it worse than we do. He receives no child support from either parent so we have to supply everything for him which doesn't bother me a bit when I can get it, the problem is that my daughters, and grandson have very little.
I was so depressed till I seen your website on the Internet. I hate hearing my daughter's crying cause they don't want to go to school cause their clothes don't look good enough. My grandson always wanting a shirt, or pair of pants that he can't have. I am so tired of telling them we can't afford it. I've asked for help here from the goodwill, Salvation Army and a few churches, and they did help by paying our elect. And gas bill which left us with enough money to buy the kids a few clothes for school, but I go to bed night after night wondering where the money's going to come from to get the kids through school this year. I'm so mentally tired!
We have one car, which is barely running to get my husband to work. I've application in at many stores, fast food places, but there’s not many places hiring this time of year.
We're in a rut that we just can't get out of. I'm hoping that you might be able to help my children with some clothes. They need everything. They have worn underclothes and my daughter has to dress down for P.E, which makes her embarrassed cause of their condition, their coats are long sleeve shirts, they borrow clothes, and coats from their friends quite a bit. I feel so sick that they have to go through this embarrassment, but I don't know what else we can do.
If you can help us in any way I would be so grateful to you. Thank you for your time. Thank You Mom of 4
Round up of sizes needed for Family #6 Daughter age 17: She wears size 7 in pants, med. shirts, bra size 34 C, shoe size 7; coat size med.
Next Daughter age 16: She wears size 11 in pants, large in shirts, bra size 36 B, shoe size 7, coat size large.
Next Daughter age 15: She wears size 18w in woman's pants, extra large in woman's shirts, bra size 40 C, underpants size 9, shoe size 7, coat size extra large.
Grandson age 11: He wears size 14 husky in jeans, 12-14 in shirts, shoe size 6 in boys, coat size 14.
Please Contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you can help this family
Family Five: (9-02-02)
I am a young mother of a five year old boy and am five 1/2 months pregnant with another. I was laid off from my job in January. Since then I have been drawing unemployment, which ran out this week. My unemployment was basically our grocery and gas money to run through the week and to help pay on bills. My husband works a regular job at a company that he has been with for over 6 yrs, but still just barely makes enough to cover the main utilities, and still sometimes we go without, when there is no money left. He makes about 11 dollars an hour and can't get any over time so he is looking for a part time job he can do on the side. We pay what we think is the most important and have to sacrifice the rest until we have enough money. It has been really hard for us to get on our feet since I have lost my job. Before I was laid off things seemed to be looking good, even though we still lived paycheck to paycheck we were able to pay our mortgage and bills on time and save a little for their necessities. I have been looking for a job every week without any luck. Now that I am a little over five months pregnant I am fearful of how we are going to afford everything if I can't find a job. People can see that I am big and pregnant and don't want to hire me. Even before I was big I tried hard to find another job, but there was so many layoffs here everyone was looking for a job. All the major companies were laying off, it seems like all at the same time.
Things just keep escalating downward for us also. My car is broke down with transmission problems. Just last week my husband paid a whopping $400 on his car to get the water pump, hoses and other stuff fixed, that really set us back even farther since he had to take out a loan to pay that. This makes it even harder for me to get a job now that we only have one car running. I have been running myself ragged taking my husband to work at 7:30 then taking my son to kindergarten at 8:30 and then repeating the process picking my son up at 3:30 then picking up my husband at 4:30 and in the meantime looking for a job myself. I just hope this car makes it. With this pregnancy I have been overwhelmingly sick every day also. I have a slipped disc in my lower back, which prevents me from standing very long or lifting anything. I was so sicken the beginning I was hospitalized because of vomiting and dehydration. My son is in desperate need of school clothes and I am in desperate need of maternity clothes. I have basically nothing to ware to interviews. I have not been able to buy anything for the baby at all yet and what I have has been donated down from family members. We have been surviving on local food bancs lately for food but that is only good for one trip a family for a while. I have run out of resources. I am sorry for sounding so desperate but I am just trying to keep back the tears writing this. It’s just the future looks so grim right now. It seems like there is nowhere to turn when things are this bad. Me and my husband are keeping our faith together for my son and new baby to be as well as we can. If you can help me and my family at all I would So much appreciate it. Please say a prayer for our unborn baby and us. God bless you all.
Family Four: Dear Jane, I do not know if you can help our family or not. We have five kids in our home. My husband is a local truck driver and pay depends on the day he has. There are times he can be at work for 10 hours and make only $50.00. I am a stay at home mom because it is hard to find a job that can work with you when your husband works from 6 am to 6pm sometimes later. I can't really work a real shift because I never know when he will get home. Our kids are great but school time is an awful thing for us. We can not afford clothes. We barely can afford school supplies. We live in a poor county (Rutherford County, NC), it is requested that parents send kleenexes, hand soap, paper for all students in class, etc. Sometimes we are even asked to send toilet paper! Try sending four kids to school with all of that per class. ( the youngest is one year). Two of my kids have ADHD and one has a learning disability. We need help at this time. School starts next weeks for the 1st throught 12th and starts in three weeks for the head start program. I would love to have decent clothes for my kids, but we can barely afford to feed them and pay our bills. We are believing in God for a miracle to happen. We have both been saved for around eight years now. God has always provided for us somehow, even when every one said there was not a way. Our churches in this area are very poor as well. Many of the mills have shut down and unemployment is at an all time high around here. But we keep hanging on. If it tells you how desperate things are in this county, one county over, a 30 minute country drive is opening a walmart distribution center, my husband is trying to get on, there are 750 jobs open. Sound great! But, 10,000 people have already applied for those jobs and more and more go each day hoping to get in. If you can help please let me know and I will send more info on my childrens sizes. Thank you so much for your time.
Re Family Four: Re: Regarding Jane sending out clothing news letter for children: Dear Jane, I read what you sent out. Thank you. I never thought about myself. My kids need things and I can always wait until a later time. You truly touched my heart and I had tears in my eyes for your kindness. Thank you again and God bless you and your family. Marianne
Update on Family Four These are the sizes needed for her four children As of 8/8/02 we do have some families offering their used child clothing to her but they can not afford the shipping cost to send them to her. We are now asking for any donations to apply for the shipping cost to this family living in Forest City, NC 28043 If anyone reading this message would like to help with the shipping cost please contact Jane Directly: email@example.com We also are running a Avon Drive and 20% of process will apply to other costs as well. Including school supplies etc. If you would like to make a Avon purchase to support the cause please contact me and I will introduce you to the Avon Agent that is offering this kind deed. Thank you Jane
Johnathan-age 11-size 12 pants--12 shirt--5 shoe Matthew--age 10--size 14pants- 12 shirt--5shoe Alexander -age 4 size 4 pants--4or 5 shirt-11 1/2 shoe Cecelia--age 1 yr--size 12 month pants or 18 month outfit that is one piece--size 4 shoe
Let me stat by telling you that this is a bit embarrassing. I need some clothes for my Family, I am out of work and my husband works as a correctional officer. We live in Florida. We have four kid?s 2 boys and 2 girls. The boys are size 14 and 5/6. The girls are juniors size 11/13 and girl plus size 18/1/2 she is heavy and is the one that has least clothes. We need everything from regular clothes to pjs underwear shoes ect. If anyone out there can help us please let me know. I have been on a respirator 2 times due to my allergies. Our family is poor so they cannot help us. I will pay for the shipping cost. Please give us our kids unwanted clothes, what some kids take for granted like clothes to our family is a treasure. Thanks; Mom of 4 Olga
Follow up 4/21/02: We found (1) swap for Olga to accept for her oldest boy and she was 'ever so happy' and wrote this back to us: 12/14 boy size just fine I wll save the long shirts for the winter here -this winter he only had 2 shirts and I had to keep washing them by hand. Thanks so much olga
Hello. I know that times are hard for everyone right now. My husband lost his job a month ago yesterday. I was ashame. My husband and I are usually on the other side of the giving thing. We always give, at Christmas, Thanksgiving, etc. However we now find ourselves with out any money. We live in a small town and no one is hiring anywhere. My daughter starts school in July and we have very few Clothes and school supplies for her. Any help would be much much much needed. My daughter needs size 5t and 6t outfits. My husband is a juvenile correctional officer. The places around here a closing down. He may have to go to Tallahassee or Pensacola to find work. Unfortunate at the moment I will not be able to pay for shipping. I do thank you so very much. A friend found your site and told me to try and see if you could help. We really appreciate it. Thank you and god bless. (name withheld)
These are true stories and I trust that these Mothers and Fathers are in need of child apparel for their children.
Swaphandmedowns.com and members all agree to ship gently used child apparel, pay a membership fee for each child apparel database needed and agree to pay the C.O.D cost to accept the box. We are not a non-profit site and try to help each other the best way we can.
So if any reading these messages can help in Anyway please contact us here at swaphandmedowns