As many of you all know, my boyfriend and I lost everything in a fire recently. We were devastated. A kind soul reached out and offered towels, sheets, and toiletries. I was totally floored and overwhelmed by the love. The kind soul was Cheryl Cordero, CEO for the Towels for Tears organization.
I had heard of Towels for Tears, in the sense of what they did for DV survivors. But when Cheryl reached out to me, I was happy and humbled. I survived DV, so this would’ve been great at that time, but was beyond wonderful now!
Who can Towels for Tears help, you might be wondering? I asked Cheryl to share insights about her organization. Here are her words:
“The Welcome Home Kit is an ‘essentials’ starter package for individuals and families who are survivors. Who are the targeted survivors? They are domestic violence survivors who left everything, entered a safe house or homeless shelter for a limited period and are preparing to begin anew. They are the homeless who successfully completed self sufficiency requirements while in the shelter and are moving into supported housing. They are victims of residential fires that lost everything and are starting over. They are the incarcerated being released to begin again. Each of these survivors have taken steps to return to a dignified normalcy, independence, and be productive members of their community. Resuming life in any of these circumstances is costly. Towels for Tears is aptly named as a proactive gesture of its mission and purpose; to help “wipe away the tears” of the hurting and most vulnerable in our communities. The Welcome Home Kit provides the backbone (and very personal) bedroom and bath household essentials that address self-care and allow the recipients to focus their often meager remaining finances on other essential areas. And in doing so, the Welcome Home Kits are prepared with quality personal products of which no one wants to have as used or hand-me-down items. A well equipped “safe-zone” called home after a traumatic life event is the starting point for new opportunities and hope for the women, children and men that receive the Kits. The cost of these items necessary to start up and maintain a household can become a setback for survivors.
Towels for Tears focuses on individuals and families who are taking proactive steps to recuperate from an unplanned life event that caused them to lose everything. The Kits are considered a hand up rather than a handout that defrays the initial costs of important items used for self-sufficiency and basic family stability. The lack of furniture, dishes, or luxuries pales in comparison to the lack of ability to care for their body, have warmth, a good night’s rest, and to deal with the stress of making ends meet immediately after leaving a shelter, prison, or a traumatic event.
The standard Welcome Home Kits consist of new, high quality items including the following: 3-piece bath towel sets, a blanket, sheet sets of requested sizing [twin, full, queen, king], comforter sets of requested sizing, and full-sized age appropriate, sealed packages of toiletries (toothbrush, toothpaste, mouthwash, soap, shower gel, shampoo, conditioner, facial cleanser/wipes, razor, shaving cream, deodorant, lotion, hand soap, hand soap refill, hand sanitizer, tissues, toilet paper, mini sewing kit and feminine products.) In addition individuals and families receive a shower curtain, rings and floor mat set. Infant Kits include hooded towel sets, crib sheets, throw cover, diapers, body wash, wipes, diaper cream, shampoo, lotion, q-tips, bibs and teether. A stuffed plush toy is added comfort for children between the ages 4-10.”
I can attest that everything she said, was sent and it was beyond awesome expectations! <3
If you’d like to help, donations can be through their website: towelsfortears.org and via PayPal or Cash App (Towels for Tears).