Registration underway for the 22nd Annual FISH Clothing for Kids Program | News, Sports, Jobs

It’s time for the 22nd Annual FISH Kids’ Clothing Drive to provide school clothes and athletic shoes for students whose parents anticipate having difficulty providing new items for the 2022-2023 school year. This program falls under the FISH Basket Brigade, whose goal is to ensure that all K-12 students who live on Pine Island or Matlacha have new athletic outfits and shoes for their first days of school. school.

Karen Durand, President of the Basket Brigade, said: “Last year, 168 students, from kindergarten to grade 12, benefited from the generosity of other Pine Island residents, most of whom ‘adopted’ participants and purchased clothing for specific children, donated gift cards or make cash donations so that purchases can be made. Given the current economic environment, we expect that number to increase significantly this year, so we are looking to expand our reach of donors to ensure that every child is ready for the new school year.

This year, children ages 5(K) to 11 will receive two tops, two bottoms, a package of underwear and a $40 gift card for the purchase of athletic shoes and bottoms. The purpose of the gift card for the purchase of shoes is to give the child the opportunity to participate in a gym class or playtime.

Children ages 12-18 will each receive $100 in gift cards designated as $60 for clothing and $40 for sneakers and socks.

To register children who will be in K-12 this fall and who live on Pine Island or Matlacha, call Karen at 513-265-7123, or for Spanish-speaking islanders, Nancy at 239-257-8385 by July 15th. will include each child’s first name, age, gender, height (for ages 5-11), and school attendance.

Those who wish “adopt” one or more students must use the same contact details. The deadline for donations is July 25. Drop-off points for new clothing will be at Fire Station No. 1 at Pine Island Center and for clothing and gift cards at Pine Island United Methodist Church during business hours (Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.). For those who prefer to make a monetary contribution, tax-deductible donations can be made online at “”> or by mail to Pine Island FISH. Please indicate “Basket Brigade” in the memo line.

Checks can be mailed to Pine Island FISH, PO Box 357, Matlacha, FL 33993.

The distribution of FISH children’s clothing to families will take place on Saturday, July 30 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. in a drive-in format in the PIUMC parking lot near fire station #1. A reminder SMS will be sent a few days before. At pick-up, each family will also be offered a Harry’s Helpings food box containing a variety of nutritious, non-perishable foods for an average of 15 family meals.

There may also be other school-related information distributed in the drive-thru to help each student prepare for the school year. Discount coupons, information on safety and health checks and personal care services or items are all welcome. Pine Island businesses and service organizations interested in participating should call Karen at the number listed above.

Pine Island FISH (Fellow Islanders Sending Help) is a non-profit, all-volunteer 501c3 neighbor association organized to help people living in the Matlacha and Pine Island communities. She is currently looking for volunteers in several areas. In addition to the Christmas Hamper and Children’s Clothing Brigade programs, FISH offers non-emergency transportation services, mobility equipment loans, special financial needs assistance, and provides respite information. There is no charge for FISH services, however equipment and cash donations are welcome.

To ask for help, volunteer or donate, call 239-283-4442 or visit

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