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Georgia first lady to visit Clothes Closet on Wednesday
Statesboro facility helps foster children with emergency clothing
Sandra Deal shot
Sandra Deal

Georgia First Lady Sandra Deal will visit Statesboro Wednesday to tour the Fostering Families Clothes Closet on Elm Street at 4:30 p.m.

Fostering Families participated in the Georgia "Day of Service" and Deal wanted to meet the employees, tour the facility and present them with a certification of appreciation from her and Gov. Nathan Deal, said Ember Bishop, special assistant to the first lady, Office of the Governor.

Back in January, volunteers in Statesboro participated in "With a Servant's Heart, A Day of Service" to organize the Clothes Closet. The "Servant's Day" was coordinated by Gov. Deal's staff to kick off his inauguration.

The Statesboro project was one of 35 around the state where volunteers pitched in to help charities, shelters, missions and environmental agencies.

The Clothes Closet became a reality after Chris and Kim Yaughn checked into becoming foster parents. It wasn't that they didn't have children of their own - they have three, ages 2-7 - but the Yaughns felt called to share with kids who are temporarily or permanently homeless.

Attending an orientation put on by the Department of Family and Children Services, the Yaughns learned that becoming foster parents takes time, and also that Bulloch County has very few foster families. Only about nine families were certified and actively keeping children, while about 40 Bulloch County children are typically in foster care at a time, according to Chris Yaughn.

"God led us into it," said Yaughn, who now sees his role as coordinating efforts to meet the needs of Bulloch County foster children in general.

Finding no organization in the county dedicated to communicating the needs of foster children to the community, the Yaughns launched Fostering Families Bulloch. It began with emails to a couple hundred people on his business contact list.

"We started calling people that we knew...," Yaughn said, "and invariably people would say, ‘Wow, what can we do?'"
One of the first needs they addressed was supplying emergency clothing to children in foster care through the Clothes Closet.

Sandra Deal is expected to be at the Clothes Closet from 4:30 to 5:15 p.m. It is located at 102 Elm Street next to Core Credit Union downtown. For further information, call (912) 690-2498.



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