A non-profit in Zeeland has created a unique shopping experience designed to clothe foster children in fashion and love.
Casandra Collins founded the non-profit “Rick Rack” in January, 2011.
“The goal is to help these kids know they’re valued and they have worth,” Collins told FOX 17 News. “They come in for an appointment and work with one of our stylists…we can help them with the styling and fitting. There is a confidence boost to that.”
Collins created the boutique and its services by building upon her own experience as a teenager in foster care. She said she was forced to leave home at the age of 13, and barely took any clothes with her.
“‘Rick RacK’ is actually in honor of my foster dad, who passed away in 2004,” explained Collins.”His legacy to me is just a legacy of love.”
The boutique aims to carry on that legacy every time a “customer” walks through the door. Each child is able to take home six pieces of clothing and accessories once a month, free of charge.
“They flourish. Those kids blossom. They’re new kids after a year,” said Collins. “”I’m actually honored that I could just be an example to them, and just inspirational with my own story… I love that they can come in and say hey, somebody has been through the system, and kind of gets where they’re at.”
Rick Rack is open to kids ages 11-19, with a referral from a qualifying agency, like Bethany Christian Services.
Collins said the store currently helps more than 80 kids. She would like to eventually expand services to serve more than 150 children in both Allegan and Ottawa Counties.
For more information on Rick Rack click here.
To find the non-profit on its Facebook page, click here.