Jerome Chisolm is exactly the person Michael Yun had in mind when he started his clothing drive.
Chisolm, a 46-year-old Greenville resident and laborer, has been out of work for eight months. He’s short on money. He’s looking for a suit.
He will likely get one, thanks to Yun.
The Jersey City businessman and owner of Garden State News joined with the Korean-American Cleaners Association of New Jersey and the Korean-American Chamber of Commerce to collect 20,000 coats, pants, hats and shirts for those who need it most this winter.
“There are a lot of ways to help people,” said Yun prior to a ceremony on the steps of City Hall last week, “but a clothing drive is the best way to help people.”
This is the third year Yun has undertaken the challenge, and by far it is his most successful. Last year, Yun collected about 3,000 clothes.
The city has joined in with Yun, as the city’s Department of Health and Human Services at 201 Cornelison Ave. is serving as the storage space for the bags upon bags of clothes.
“Winter is a cold time of year,” said Mayor Bret Schundler at the ceremony, nodding toward Yun. “But if you have people with love in their hearts and warmth in their spirits, it will be less cold.”
Collection will continue up until Christmas, said Yun. He hopes to gather 30,000 articles.
The department has already begun distribution.
Yun said that a man got a job last year with the help of a suit he found from the clothing drive. He was so grateful, he came back and thanked those who helped him.
A similar story came up again Monday. During the ceremony, Chisolm, the Greenville resident, was passing by City Hall and asked about the goings-on. When he learned it was a clothing drive, the man with the fraying coat said, “I could use the help.”
The out-of-work road paver learned of the bounty at Cornelison Avenue and left to check it out.
For more information about making a donation, contact Michael Yun, chairman and organizer of the clothing drive, at (201) 659-0648. Health and Human Services is located at 201 Cornelison Ave. Anyone wishing to pick up clothing is welcome, Mon-Fri., 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. 547-6800.