For A Greater Cause January Spotlight – Eva’s Closet
With the holiday season behind us, it can be easy to forget about the continued need of those less fortunate in our community. If you’ve made it your New Year’s resolution to give back this year, put Eva’s Closet on your radar. Founded by Jessica Goodall in February 2016, it has become a charity with long arms that embrace a diverse community, as as well as it’s wide spectrum of needs.
Growing up in Worcester county, Massachusetts, Goodall spent a lot of time with her great aunt, Eva Engel, who was a founder of Abby’s House: a shelter for abused women and children. Goodall remembers, “She was amazing. That was what she was meant to do, helping people in need. She was my inspiration and I knew from a young age that I was suppose to do the same thing.”
After college graduation, Goodall relocated to Southwest Florida to be closer to family. Over the next eleven years, her job in the child welfare system in Naples opened her eyes to the needs in the area, and there were many. She
remembers, “My last semester of grad school at FGCU, I had the idea to begin Eva’s Closet and my family supported me fully in doing so.”
She has since taken over half of the Jim Goodall Equipment warehouse off Alico Road, filling it with new and gently used donations to help people in need; from foster children and those in transitional housing, to abused women and the homeless, just to name a few.
Goodall’s long-term goal is to raise enough money to buy her parents’ warehouse; she definitely needs the space! The donations she receives, organized in rows and stacks, include well-maintained and new clothing, paper and hygiene products, home goods and a small food pantry.
The socially minded businesswoman says, “We aid hundreds of people every month. We are hoping to increase community awareness so that we may continually gain support in our efforts to aid local children and families in need.”
Jessica’s Great Aunt Eva died before seeing her niece’s grand accomplishment, but her legacy lives on and it’s not just because her name is on the building. Her spirit of service is alive and well in Goodall who in turn passes it on to others, every single day.
Clients are served by appointment, but donations are accepted anytime at the warehouse. After the holidays, Goodall’s needs are just as great, especially for items such as:
• Blankets & sheets
• Pots, pans & kitchen utensils
• Non-perishable food
• Well-maintained/new children’s clothing
• Well-maintained/new children’s shoes
Monetary donations are also deeply appreciated. For more details on how you can help Eva’s Closet give back to our community, call 239-339-3216 or visit their website at www.evas-foundation.org.
“For a Greater Cause” is a monthly initiative of Living Local, spotlighting a local non-profit that is making a difference in our community. Living Local also makes a monetary donation to the non-profit on the behalf of its advertising partners.