The Sunday Breakfast Mission in Wilmington is in urgent need of 10,000 new undergarments for men, women and children.
The homeless shelter on N. Poplar Street launched Operation Care-Ware this week.
“We have always needed undergarments, and undergarments are always difficult to get,” said Rev. Tom Laymon, senior pastor and CEO of the SBM.
Laymon specified underwear from kids sizes up to XXXL is the biggest thing the shelter needs right now, but other things like bras and undershirts are also in high demand.
“What prompted me to really think we really need to get this done, this is a major issue, was little kids coming in with the only underwear they have is what they have on,” Laymon said. “And then we always are being confronted with men and women who need the underwear.”
Laymon said over the past several years the number of homeless coming through his doors has increased and in spite of spending upwards of $20,000 on new underwear annually, the shelter can’t keep up.
“Often times when we think of the homeless, we think of people being given used clothing,” Laymon said. “But when it comes to underwear, who among us wants to actually wear a pair of someone else’s underwear? Nobody. And certainly when it comes to kids, it’s hard to imagine that.”
Laymon said being able to give a week’s worth of clean, new underwear provides a measure of dignity to those who are experiencing a rough patch. The SBM provides safe shelter to hundreds of men, women and children every day.
The pastor hopes this big push will bring in enough underwear to meet the shelter’s demands for the entire year.
Financial donations can be made online, or you can drop off donations at the shelter located at 110 N. Poplar Street, Wilmington, DE, 19801.