Curt Wilson was just 15 when he was killed in a car crash on May 7. His mom, Ashley Wilson, has founded a local charity, Curt’s Closet, for area kids in need. / Image courtesy of Cullman High School
CULLMAN – Two months after the loss of her son in a traffic accident, Ashley Wilson is fulfilling a years-old vision of helping needy children and families in the community.
“It’s called Curt’s Closet,” said Wilson, “and it’s something that God laid on my heart many years ago. Like most of us do, I put it off due to fear of stepping out of my comfort zone; but if I’ve learned anything in the past two months, it’s that we’re not promised tomorrow. We need to do the works of Christ, because that’s why we’re here: to love and to give.
“I would love to collect new and gently used clothing, shoes, backpacks and lunchboxes, and have it where families in need could come and let their children pick out items new to them, so they can go back to school feeling good about themselves and knowing that others love them. As a single parent, I know the burden of the expense of getting your kids back in school. It adds up so quickly. There’s a lot of parents out there that are just not financially able to do that, so their kids do without.
“The vision in my head is so huge, that I knew I couldn’t do it before this school year; so my plan is to start collecting these items now, and this time next year hold it in a location with a store feel, so they can come and pick out their items, just like they would go to Belk and shop, but the items would be free.”
Wilson has set up a Facebook page for Curt’s Closet at www.facebook.com/cw20curtscloset, where she can be reached and those interested can find out where to donate or get involved. More than 700 people liked the page in its first two days.
She does not plan to make this a solo operation. Many people have offered to help, and Wilson plans to begin meetings next week to get things organized.
She explained, “I plan on meeting with a couple of people next week that want to partner with me in this, because this is out of my comfort zone, and I want to do it right.”
As she moves forward, Wilson will be seeking typical clothing store items like racks and hangers, and will also be looking for places to hold the “shopping” events. Several local businesses and businesspeople have come forward to offer their sites as drop-off locations for donated items, including:
- Cullman Cosmetic & Family Dentistry- 311 Sixth Ave. SE, Cullman
- Happy Homes Real Estate- 221 Second Ave. SE, Cullman
- Paul Bussman, DMD- 1625 Main Ave. SW, Cullman
- Willow Bend Mortgage- 116 Second St. SE, Cullman
- Quick Tire Sales- 1600 AL Hwy 157, Cullman
- Bubble Gum & Blue Jeans- 400 Fifth St. SW, Cullman
- First Baptist Church (Rebekah Mickle)- 501 Second Ave. SW, Cullman
- 1st Federal Mortgage- 101 First Ave. NE #230, above Flavors, Cullman
Wilson concluded, “I’m hoping it’s going to be a huge success, because if I can just spread an ounce of the joy and the love that Curt brought, not only to me but to so many, then this will be a success.”
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