The Village Closet

Important news about the Village Closet

It is with great sadness that we announce that all of the tenants of the former Berkshire Trail Elementary School building, including The Village Closet, have been asked by the town of Cummington to immediately vacate the building to make way for municipal office space.

As of August 1st, 2019, the Village Closet will no longer be open at 2 Main Street in Cummington.

Check back here, follow us on Facebook, and sign up for our email newsletter for updates on a new location and our “Pop-Up” Closets planned for the Fall.

This represents an incredible loss for area families who have come to recognize the location as one of the only social centers for families in the Hilltowns. The Village Closet, along with the other wonderful businesses, collaboratives, a Family Center, and a preschool have been housed in this building since late 2015. Together, we formed a strong community resource in an area where none had existed. We thank the town of Cummington for their generosity over the last 4+ years.

It Takes a Village is now seeking public input as we actively search for a new location that can house our Village Closet donation site and drop-in parents groups and classes. It is our goal to stay centrally located within the Hilltowns so ideal locations would be in Cummington, Goshen, Chesterfield, Williamsburg, Worthington or surrounding areas. Our timeframe is short but we are dedicated to finding a space that will allow us to continue our mission of free, comprehensive, postpartum support in Western Massachusetts.

The Village Closet served over 1,500 families last year and, since its opening in early 2016, has distributed over $250,000 in baby, children, and maternity supplies, and diapers. Our programs and services provide a safety-net that does not exist anywhere else in Western Massachusetts. We are committed to ensuring this essential resource for families continues. Be assured that our Home Visit Program, Ashfield Parents group, summer playground meetups, film and speaker series will continue. If you have an emergency need for baby gear before we find a new space to reopen, please contact us.

We now ask the community for help:

  • Please email us at info@hilltownvillage.org if you know of any leads, or an affordable location for us.
  • Are you part of an organization that may have space for a Village Closet?
  • Please share this post and spread the word.

We will not let this valuable resource for families disappear, but we need your help.

Between now and August 1st, please refrain from bringing in any donations other than diapers. Our last open day is Tuesday, July 30th, 2019. Thank you for your continued support. We look forward to great new things to come.

“I just want to express my gratitude over this program. It has already helped me so much, just in the one time that I was able to make it up there. And I think it’s wonderful what you guys do. Thank you so much for your help.”

In the meantime …

If you have an emergency need for baby items, you may call us at 413-650-3640 or email closet@hilltownvillage.org.

For non-emergency needs, please reach out to the following organizations and see if they have what you are looking for:

  • Northampton Re-Center
  • Northampton Survival Center
  • Amherst Survival Center
  • Parson’s Closet (Easthampton)

Donations

We accept:

  • gently-used baIMG_3353by clothes and shoes (premie through kids’ size 10)
  • baby carriers
  • nursing and maternity clothes
  • blankets and bedding
  • breast and bottle feeding supplies (including unused breast pumps, clean breast pump accessories, and formula)
  • cloth and disposable diapers
  • car seats and booster seats (not-expired)
  • strollers
  • “pack and plays”, cribs, and bassinets
  • high chairs
  • swings and baby seats
  • books and toys (newborn through preschool age)
  • and other baby furniture/equipment

We do NOT accept:

  • foam mattresses
  • stained or ripped clothing (we do not have the resources to launder donations)*
  • expired, recalled, or broken equipment
    • We can NOT accept drop-side cribs
    • We no longer accept Rock n’ Play sleepers
    • Please check your car seat’s expiration date before donating
    • You can check for recalled items here: www.recalls.gov

How you can help

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If you are donating items, help us by:

  • separating clothing by size and gender, and labeling the boxes or bags.
  • cleaning the clothing before donating, and removing any ripped or stained items.*
  • cleaning any furniture or gear as best you can (car-wash detergent is GREAT for high chairs!)
  • calling or emailing ahead if you have a BIG donation (lots of clothes, or a larger piece of furniture) – (413) 650-3640, or closet@hilltownvillage.org
  • staying and helping put your donations away. We’ll show you how!

We can always use help folding and organizing donations, as well a delivering items to families who cannot make it to the Village Closet. Please email closet@hilltownvillage.org or call 413-650-3640 to find out how else you can help!

*Other donation sites will recycle ripped and stained clothing and textiles, such as Salvation Army, GoodWill, and the yellow PlanetAid donation bins.

Community of Supporters

We are grateful to the Town of Cummington for welcoming us into this space and we look forward to collaborating with our neighbors sharing the building including the Cummington Preschool, Cummington Family Center, and the Homeschool Cooperative (The HUB).

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