COSHOCTON -- The Mentoring Center of Coshocton County (formerly Big Brothers Big Sisters) is hosting a clothing drive through Aug. 3. Area residents are encouraged to drop off clean, new and gently used clothing at the office at 410 Main St., 2nd floor, Coshocton. Hygiene products, school supplies, and backpacks are also gratefully accepted.

According to Executive Director Sheila Mayse, the donated items will help to provide a back to school shopping event for children in the Bigs/Littles and Side by Side program.

"We are hoping for a wide range of sizes, as the children in our program range in ages from infants to 18. We encourage people to bring us the clothes they are unable to sell at their yard sales or any clothes they might be considering donating to make room for new purchases," she said.

This is the third year for such an event.

According to Mayse, "We have seen a real need for clothing for children in the program. This program has been a wonderful asset to the services we provide. In order to give children an opportunity to learn about the value of money, we have set up a store program, where children will "buy" their items with play money. Not only do we want the children to have the essentials they need for a successful start to the school year, but we also want to introduce the concept of budgeting to the children as early and as often as possible.

"Any clothes not distributed as part of the agency's Back-to-School event are then shared with other churches and organizations providing a similar service. We are happy to partner with other community agencies to help reach our goal of a successful start to the school year for as many children as possible," she said.

All clothing and back-to-school items can be dropped off at The Mentoring Center of Coshocton County at 410 Main St., 2nd floor. Arrangements can also be made for pick-up if needed.

For information, call The Mentoring Center of Coshocton County at 740-623-8110. The Mentoring Center of Coshocton County is a United Way agency.