Foster Pantry is here to help foster families


WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — In New Hanover County, hundreds of children are in social services.

A new local organization is here to help provide foster families what they need for these kids.

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“It creates a communal support, so that no foster family says ‘no’ due to lack of tangible materials,” Emily Klinefelter, Foster Pantry organizer, said.

That is why people like Klinefelter started Foster Pantry, a grass roots effort to provide New Hanover County D.S.S foster families with a variety of supplies children might need.

“Even clothing needs can be met. Then that takes some pressure off them, knowing that they’ve got clothes for school the next day, pajamas for night,” Mark Murphy, a New Hanover County Foster Home licensing worker, said.

This all started when Klinefelter and her husband Derek got their first foster placement. Children who had almost nothing.

“Instead of just really focusing on them and kind of starting that building of trust and routine, we had to go out and not only prepare for the next day, but prepare for that night,” Klinefelter said.

They have slowly built up donations and supplies such as clothes, bags, baby-items and toiletries. But they said they will always need more.

“The big things that are in demand are really, bags and backpacks and suitcases. We are asking that nothing has local labels on it. We don’t want to label these kids in any way,” Klinefelter said.

They are offering a helping hand to children in a new environment with hopes to make that transition as comforting as possible.

“It’s crucial for the child who’s coming out of trauma to just, almost like dealing with shock of having some of the basic needs met, then they’re able to handle more emotionally, the things they are going through as well,” Murphy said.

Foster pantry is constantly looking for donations and will be holding an event this Saturday at Port City community church at 9 a.m. Go to their website for more information on how to help.