Our Closet is a volunteer-driven organization that provides clothing to vulnerable Philadelphians and their families free of charge by operating “pop-up shops” throughout the city. We offer community members who are struggling to make ends meet the opportunity to receive free, quality clothing in the “pop-up shop” in a dignified and welcoming space. Our goal is to meet a basic need for our shoppers so they can better focus on handling other stressors in their lives, such as securing a steady source of income or finding permanent housing solutions, with confidence.
Executive Director Jill Aschkenasy founded Our Closet in 2011 in response to a crisis she witnessed that year: a Philadelphia family’s house had burned down, and they were in need of the most basic items to regain stability during an undoubtedly frightening and stressful time. Hearing this, Jill reached out to her network to help this family, and the response she received was overwhelming. Donations poured in from friends, family members, and neighbors to help this unknown family rebuild their home. These moments of crisis and instability are sadly all too common in our city, and as Jill continued to learn of these stories, she continued to put out calls to action, receiving unwavering support with each request. Identifying an opportunity to bridge excess and need within the city, Jill founded Our Closet to provide support to the many families and individuals whose stories remain untold. Since its founding, Our Closet has distributed more than an estimated 30,000 articles of clothing to more than 7,000 shoppers in the city.
Aschkenasy founded Our Closet in 2011 after seeing a need for easily accessible services providing clothing to community members in need. She is a graduate of University of Wisconsin at Madison and Benjamin Cardozo School of Law. Prior to her role with Our Closet, she was an Assistant District Attorney in Manhattan. Her leadership has taken Our Closet from simply an idea to a constantly expanding successful network of clothing pop up shops throughout the city.
Anisha oversees the organization’s programming and operations. She is passionate about service, and brings experience working with vulnerable populations here in Philadelphia. Prior to Our Closet, Anisha worked at LIFT-Philadelphia, and served a two-year term as an AmeriCorps member. She has a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Michigan, and is currently working on her Master of Public Administration at the University of Pennsylvania.
Andrea is the newest member of the Our Closet team. Andrea has a passion for social service and helping the community around her, working most closely with vulnerable populations. Prior to Our Closet, Andrea worked at Jewish Family Services, and in an emergency, transitional group home for adults with Developmental Disabilities . She has a Bachelor’s Degree from the Muhlenberg College, and a graduate level Certification of Nonprofit Management from University of Connecticut.