Wearhouse Proves ‘Lifesaver’ for Back-to-School

By Trent Freeman, Treehouse Marketing and Communications

Angela Dodd and her husband, Andrew, always wanted to be foster parents. After completing foster care training and becoming licensed, the Dodds opened their hearts and homes to three siblings last year—the two older children just one day before school started and their baby sister a few days later.

“What we’ve learned is that you don’t really know anything about the kids until they arrive, so planning for their immediate material needs is difficult. The Wearhouse has been a lifesaver,” Angela said of Treehouse’s free store for youth in foster care.

During an emergency back-to-school shopping spree at The Wearhouse, the Dodds stocked up on everything the kids needed from backpacks and school supplies to seasonally appropriate clothing.

Angela stressed that Treehouse made it easy and provided top-quality merchandise.

“You know the kids are going to look nice,” she said.

That first placement lasted two months at which point the children were reunited with their birth mother. Since then, the Dodds have had two more short-term placements and currently have three foster children including two 12-year-olds. It hasn’t been easy.

“Each of the kids has their individual struggles. Navigating those has been difficult, but it’s worth it when you see a kid start to make progress,” Angela said.

She singled out the contribution of Treehouse Educational Advocate Mark Richards for setting up the Individualized Education Program (IEP) during their first placement. An IEP is a written statement that guides a student’s learning while in special education.

“It’s nice to have someone there who knows the educational piece and also can help with summer camps and everything else that Treehouse does,” Angela said. “Having Treehouse get your back is really essential for the new foster parent.”

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About the Author

Trent Freeman is the Associate Director of Marketing & Communications at Treehouse.

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