1,500 Garments Rescued from Shredder!

August 8, 2009 at 8:40 am | Posted in News | 4 Comments

11_02_09_21_36_12_BellSouth.Logo1Rescued from almost-certain destruction, over a thousand articles of clothing are now enroute to people who really need them, thanks to a clever scavenging project cooked up by a pair of big-hearted coworkers. And thanks to Shane from Knoxville for sending us the tip and a link to this great story that appeared yesterday at KnoxNews.com:

Two Knoxville AT&T employees prove that helping the community is just a matter of getting creative.

When AT&T Inc. acquired BellSouth Corp. in 2006, the original plan was to burn or shred all the employees’ work clothing that featured the BellSouth logo for security reasons.

But Fred Waters and Jay Foster came up with a different idea.

Waters and Foster are both part of AT&T’s Pioneer Program – a volunteer group that uses grassroots projects to bring about change in local communities.

“We got with the company and asked if they would allow us to partner with someone in the community to remove the logos and give them to those who need them,” Waters said.

Waters then presented his idea to the Knoxville District Baptist Missionary and Educational Association, which then found church volunteers to de-brand the clothing.

Volunteers tediously removed the BellSouth logo from more than 1,500 articles of clothing, including button-down shirts, polo shirts, khaki pants, shorts and heavy Gore-Tex coats.

The end result was given to Lost Sheep Ministry, which will distribute the clothing to those in need.

“We are just excited to get these clothes,” said Lost Sheep Executive Director Maxine Raines. “They are so needed and are a true blessing.”

Several hundred items were donated to an orphanage in Kenya, she said.

Raines said the remaining clothing will be given to those in need in Knoxville – some clothing given out immediately and the heavier clothing when the season changes.

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