PASCO COUNTY, Fla. — “We have everything from infant clothes to shoes to toys,” said George Agovino, Founder of Fostering Change Foster Closet.
Fostering Change Foster Closet is in Pasco County, serving kids in need.
“We help children in need, foster children, anybody in the community, that needs help. From cribs to prom dresses,” said Agovino.
And everything in between, they provide it all to kids and foster families for free.
“This year is probably double the amount of children in care and children in need than last year,” said Agovino.
“We have 2,500 children right now in foster care, in district six which is Pasco and Pinellas, Hillsborough has another 2,800,” he added.
Agovino is a foster parent himself and tries to help as many kids as he can with help from the community.
“A lot of the children like we always say they have the five minutes and the garage bag, they have five minutes to get their things and then they run out so what we try to do is we try to give them whatever they forgot. Most of the time it’s everything,” he said.
They use every inch of their property to store items for kids in need, even turning a semi-truck into a storage unit.
“What we did is we built shelves and we put in air conditioning in,” said Agovino.
Fostering Change helps kids year-round but right now they’re working on their annual Christmas toy drive.
“Santa’s going to come. Santa’s going to come underneath the tree this year, and we’re going to make sure all of the children have brand new toys to open,” said Agovino.
The pandemic has made things hard though.
“This year has been really, really tough. Like I said with COVID, basically the world closed down,” said Agovino.
The donations stopped coming for a while, but that’s not stopping them.
"We're not even close to being done,” said Agovino.
Although they have donations stored across their property, it’s still not enough.
“When you put 100, 200, children into an area and you say alright everyone is going to get five different toys, it goes quick,” said Agovino
“We also give to birthdays, and we give to Easter and we do all of that stuff as the children come in and even just a feel-good toy when a child comes into care or if they move and they don’t have much like a bad situation,” he added.
Agovino said he’s on a mission to make a difference for kids in our community.
“My heart is filled being able to help.”
They’re hoping you’ll be able to help too.
“If anybody knows me it’s very difficult for me to ask for help. It’s difficult for me to ask for monetary donations because it’s people’s hard-earned money. But there’s lots of things we need you know toys definitely, monetary donations we do and the reason for that just so they know, nobody makes anything. It all goes to the children.”
Fostering Change Foster Closet is in need of:
- Monetary donations
- Large-sized diapers
- New underwear for toddlers and kids of all sizes
For more information on how you can help, check out their website or Facebook page.