By April 9, 2014

Giving Children’s Products (and Families) New Life

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By Brad Wood

Christi Dodson is a survivor. The mother of four is happily married, works as the area sales manager for ZMC Hotels, and is owner of the growing and successful Kid Co. children’s consignment shop in Anthem. But things haven’t always been this good.

See, Dodson is a product of the system, so to speak. As a child, she lived in homeless shelters, foster care, even tents. “You should have seen me!” Dodson said. She was a self-described mess. She was the good kid, though, never getting in the kind of trouble one might worry about with a kid in the system. She was one of the lucky ones and, at 16, found herself with foster parents who truly cared about her. “I owe them so much,” Dodson said.

In her early years, Dodson learned how to make do with very little. So it’s no wonder she finds herself owner of a children’s consignment store, re-selling high-quality items to those who can use them. But Dodson’s real success becomes evident in the goods that don’t sell or are not quite up to the shop’s standards.

“When those things come into the store and they don’t move, I have a hard time sending those things away,” Dodson said. “There’s a kid in me that would jump at those items.” So she goes to great lengths to make sure as much gets used as possible.  Dodson views the shop as an opportunity to serve. “I feel like it’s been meaningful in a humanitarian aspect because I can help people,” Dodson said.

Step 1: Donation Days. The annual event will allow folks in need to come in and help themselves. For no charge, they’ll fill a large bag full of clothes and things that can make a meaningful difference in their lives. “It makes me humble and proud,” said Dodson; “The people who come and have need—they hug us.” And for those who need larger items, Dodson lets them take one per vehicle in order to spread the good around.

Step 2: Nonprofit Hand-off. Dodson distributes what’s left after Donation Days to nonprofits—such as UMOM New Day Centers—serving homeless families and the foster community.

Step 3: It’s a Big World. If the non-profits don’t take it, she finds a third world country that will.

Step 4: Avoiding Landfill. And for those clothes and textiles that are no longer usable in their current form, Dodson gets them to a company that recycles them into insulation material.

In one way or another, the donations survive to make the world a bit better. Just like Dodson.

Donation Days
Saturday–Sunday, April 12–13
Noon–4 p.m.
Kid Co. Boutique & Consignment
4220 W. Opportunity Way, Anthem

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