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Bridge to Success

Team members: Row 1 (l-r): Lakessa Wright, Page Rogers, Jeannie Chapman
Row 2 (l-r): Angie Ayers, Doyle Bradford, Paige Stephenson
Not pictured: Michael Brown, Mandy Powers Norrell

Whether it is from being unemployed, incarcerated, dealing with health care costs and challenges, or struggling with financial instability, many individuals in Spartanburg County find themselves in transition and could use help to meet their most immediate needs. One basic necessity is clothing, particularly clothes and coats for cold weather, business clothes for job interviews, and shoes. To help meet these needs, the Bridge to Success capstone project is dedicated to helping disadvantaged job seekers and individuals reentering the work force in Spartanburg County by providing professional business attire for job interviews and daily work wear. We are partnering with the Bridge at Green Street, located at 446 Brawley St, Spartanburg, SC 29303, to create a space in their existing clothing Wearhouse for professional business attire.

The Bridge was established in April 2018 to house First Baptist Spartanburg’s community outreach ministry which offers financial stability navigation through United Way as well as food and clothing assistance. The Bridge is aided by a number of other nonprofit organizations. While First Baptist pays for the facility upkeep, utilities, and other administrative aspects, the outreach’s ability to provide services is reliant on donations and volunteers from church and community members. The Bridge consists of the market, where food and small personal items are distributed, and two clothing shops called “The Wearhouse.” On any given day, over 45 families are served at the Bridge. 

To assist with donations to the Bridge Wearhouse, Bridge to Success will create a separate space in the clothing Wearhouse which will be filled with professional business attire collected through annual Corporate Clothing Drives. The group will create a database of corporate partners who are willing to conduct Professional Attire Clothing Drives as well as create an ongoing referral program for beneficiaries through a partnership with United Way, which will be added to their menu of volunteer opportunities. The list of committed corporate clothing donors includes Milliken, TD Bank, and Anmed Health. The list of targeted non-profits on the referral program for beneficiaries include Miracle Hill, Safe Homes, Middle Tyger Community Center, Upstate Family Resource Center, Angels Charge Ministry, and Jump Start.