by Melanie London

Some of us do not do well with uncertainty. And with all that’s happening in the world, all that has happened so quickly, uncertainty is all we have right now. About the future. About the present.

We have had to shut down all our pop-up shops. We’ve had to cancel all our sorting groups at the warehouse. This means that we’re not providing clothing and community for those that need it most. And we’re not working hard to get ready for pop-ups with volunteers committed to our mission. And while this is heartbreaking, it is for the larger and more all-encompassing mission of keeping our community, our world, healthy and thriving.

We’re getting plenty of work done: blog posts like this one, data gathering and analysis (fun!), organizing our files (trust me – that NEEDS to be done), catching up on emails we always seem to be behind on. Still, the work we do is deeply based in social interaction and human connection, and that is missing for all of us right now – the OC team, our shoppers, volunteers and host site partners. Living without the joy this connection brings at our pop-ups and sortings has been really difficult. We always say we have the best jobs, but that’s because of those we have the privilege of working for and working with. Without you it’s certainly not the same and we can’t wait until things get back to normal. Which they hopefully will.

But for now we live with the uncertainty of cancellations and postponements and lockdowns, and we try to do our best to stop the spread of this extremely contagious illness by staying at home and away from others as much as possible. And we strongly encourage you to do the same.

We don’t know what life will look like on the other side of this, but we can promise you that we will be here, ready to help, as much as we can. Please be well and know how much we miss you all, and how much we are thinking of you.

UPDATE: Shoppers and Volunteers - Due to ongoing concerns regarding the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus), in accordance with guidelines and regulations set forth by the city and state, we unfortunately must cancel pop-up shops for the foreseeable future. This means there will be no pop-up shops scheduled for the rest of 2020.

If you or a client of yours is in urgent need of clothing, we have an emergency clothing program for which you or the client may qualify. Please contact us at JFCS' Care Navigation line, 866-532-7669, if you are seeking emergency services.

Please stay tuned to this website and our social media channels (@ourclosetpa) for further updates. We'll continue to monitor the situation as we decide when we are able to re-open pop-up shops. This decision is being made for the health and wellness of our community. Thank you.