LEXINGTON, Ky. – Beyond the needs for food, shelter, and clothing, is the need for laundry service. The children in Fayette County schools (FCPS) can get clothes laundered for free, through one ministry’s service. Miracle Ministries is washing clothes for the families of homeless children, and for kids under the poverty line. They volunteer their time, while the owner of “Miracle Bubbles” laundromat donates his money. School staff say that having clean clothes to wear directly impacts a child’s school attendance, positively.
Dr. Glenn “Sandy” Douglass heads-up the non-profit’s activities at Miracle Bubbles. He says it’s coincidence that the name matches his mission. The minister has been running the service for just more than one year in Lexington. He’s hoping to soon provide it statewide. It’s part of the larger ministry, Kentuckians Sowing Generosity through the Kentucky Church of God of Prophecy.
“So many people want to give these children clothes so that they can be dressed nice and look and feel good about themselves, but the problem is we don’t have a way for them to wash them regularly, pretty soon they don’t look new at all,” says Douglass.
Fayette Schools staff say the need for laundry services can be overlooked.
“When you look at students succeeding in school, they must have all their basic needs met. Sometimes students don’t come to school because they don’t have clean clothes,” James Hodge, FCPS’ liaison, says.
Douglass has two rules: dignity and confidentiality. He doesn’t reveal the identities of the people who come for laundry services. He says that’s to keep them dignified, but also that, the goal of the service is to keep the kids feeling good about themselves at school.
“I sub quite a bit, and I see them in different schools. I see how they look and I know the parents. I get to really meet the parents, the guardians, the ones that are taking care of them, and the gratitude that they feel really warms my heart,” says Douglass.
Hodge says that most of the kids’ families to qualify are those who live “in transition,” meaning, those who live with relatives or at a place where they could be turned-out at any moment’s notice.