Clothing store helps the unemployed

June 17, 2009 1:45:09 PM PDT
People who have lost their jobs to the recession are watching every penny, and getting the bills paid may not leave much money for proper clothing for a job interview. But, if you're out of work and can scrape together $100, there is a non-profit San Francisco store that may be able to help.

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Renee Tiolo of Redwood City and Chereesse Thymes of Oakland have two things in common. They are out of work and they are taking part in a program run by Kathy Miner, the owner of the Miner Miracle clothing store in San Francisco.

"It's for the unemployed man and woman who have been caught in the downturn -- the economic downturn -- and are struggling right now," said Miner.

For a flat fee of $100 and proof that they're unemployed, Miner will provide interview-appropriate clothing.

"A suit, a top, shoes, brand new shoes, and accessories," said Miner.

The clothes are all new and feature brand names like Ann Taylor, Michael Kors and Larry Levine. Both Renee and Chereesse are looking for work and say the program is like a dream come true.

"It makes you feel very confident, very uplifting and you feel like you can go out and get a job tomorrow," said Renee.

"The price is a stunner for me. I think I'm wearing $500 worth of clothing, plus shoes for a $100," said Chereesse.

The Miner Miracle program for the unemployed is new, but for years the non-profit has been providing a similar service at no cost for people on public assistance. Both programs are funded by shoppers who pay the stores regular prices which are still 50 to 80 percent below retail. They get the satisfaction of knowing that one way or another their money goes to help out of work people find jobs.

"It's important that our agency, Miner Miracle, rise to the need of the community and this happens to be the need right now," said Miner.

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