LAUREL, MS (WDAM) - The Mississippi Department of Rehabilitation Services held open house on Tuesday in Laurel for the newly established Jana's Closet, a resource for MDRS clients in need of work appropriate clothing.
Jana's Closet is named after Jan Walley, an MDRS employee who passed away from ovarian cancer in June 2012. Jan was affectionately known as Jana to her grandchildren and coworkers. The closet is being established in Jan's memory to provide assistance for individuals with disabilities who are transitioning into the work force.
The closet provides clothing, shoes and accessories directly to individuals who need work and interview appropriate attire. It also serves as a retail training ground for MDRS clients through the AbilityWorks facilty.
The project is dependent on donations from members of the community and community partners. The MDRS Laurel District serves individuals with disabilities in Covington, Jones, Wayne, Lamar and Jasper counties.
"We are hoping media and press outlets in our Laurel District will come see first-hand how Jana's Closet operates and encourage the public to donate to this worthy cause," MDRS Executive Director Chris Howard said.
The closet accepts new and gently used clothing items for men and women, as well as accessories including shoes, belts and purses. Men's clothing items are particularly needed. Monetary donations and gift cards to retail outlets are encouraged, as client needs tend be very individualized. Contributions are tax deductible and may be made at the facility any Monday through Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.