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YWCA Our Voice: The Boutique honors seventh anniversary

YWCA Our Voice

Did you know The Boutique just celebrated its seventh anniversary? We can’t believe it either! On June 19, 2013, we opened our retail doors to the public.

The Boutique is a high-end thrift shop located at the YWCA. It also provides clothing for residents of the YWCA’s shelters who are conquering homelessness or escaping from abusive situations.

The funds generated impact the clients served by the YWCA. We are able to stock the food pantry, grant hygiene products, counseling services, parenting classes and case management to our clients through the revenue of The Boutique.

The Boutique runs on donated items: New or lightly worn clothing, shoes and accessories are accepted during the hours they are open. They have returned to full-time business hours since Lycoming County was placed in the green phase.

Open 3 to 6 p.m. Wednesdays, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturdays. We do have a required face mask policy in place and where possible, we ask for you to keep your distance from other shoppers and employees in The Boutique.

The manager, Kahlie DeHotman, who’s been with The Boutique for four and half years, has seen transformations that have been made possible because The Boutique has been there. It’s these moments that she and the volunteers witness that are some of the most important memories they hold close.

“The most rewarding part of working in The Boutique are the moments when I can see clients get what they need. We had a pregnant client one time, and we rarely get maternity clothing, but we had one maternity jacket that fit her perfectly and it made her so happy,” DeHotman said.

Many of our clients come with only the clothes on their backs and a child attached to their hip. These brave individuals come to us, asking for help, and we help them with everything. From counseling and legal services, to shelter, to clothing. The YWCA programs help in many valuable ways, but sometimes, a jacket can mean so much to someone who has very little.

We have clothing for men, women and children for all the seasons. From interview clothing, to pajamas and workout clothing, to jeans and casual dresses, there’s something here for everyone looking for quality clothing at a reasonable price. We also have accessories like belts, scarves, handbags and jewelry.

Our wonderful, hard-working manager loves having new volunteers in to help her with the sorting of clothing, chatting with customers and decorating the store with the most up-to-date clothing.

If you are interested in volunteering with The Boutique, or if you would like to donate lightly worn clothing to the shop, call DeHotman at 570-322-4367 ext. 121 or email kdehotman@ ywcawilliamsport.org.

The YWCA Northcentral PA is dedicated to empowering women and eliminating racism. We are here for those who have experienced domestic violence, sexual assault, other violent crimes or homelessness. For more information or if you need our services, you may call the confidential, 24/7 Wise Options hotline at 1-800-326-8483.

— Kern is the communications and development manager at the YWCA, 815 W. Fourth St. Her column is published on the last Saturday/Sunday of each month in the Lifestyle section.

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