After adopting two girls, a Georgia family decided to open a free boutique for foster children in need. Linda Durrence and her husband got the idea for the clothing store after seeing how little their foster daughters owned when arriving in the foster care system.
When they first arrived at their home, they only brought a trash bag half-filled with a few items. They had one hairbrush, a toothbrush each, a trial-sized toothpaste, and clothes that no longer fit them.
This broke Linda’s heart, so she and her husband immediately took the girls shopping to get everything they needed. Linda felt incredibly blessed that she could provide for the two girls. However, she wondered about all the foster children whose parents couldn’t afford even basic necessities. She wanted to do something to help them, at least to make their lives more comfortable.
So, she began collecting donations to open a. While the store opened earlier in 2022, the Durrence’s had already started helping families in need. They have committed to providing seven full sets of clothing and shoes to children up to 18 years old who need them. In addition, they will receive seven new sets every season, or when the child’s size changes significantly.
Blossom accepts monetary donations along with new or gently used clothing for boys and girls, hygiene items, shoes, and school supplies.
The Durrence’s have been blessed with their foster daughters and the opportunity to serve their community. However, they have also been through their fair share of hardship and loss. Tragically, the family’s eldest daughter Kristin died in an automobile accident at the age of 27 in December 2016.
Still grieving, the family moved back to their hometown of Glennville with their two other daughters. They began attending a local church, where they met three foster sisters who lived with another family.
The Durrence’s Adopt the Foster Children and Open Blossom
The girls quickly became friends with the Durrence’s daughters, and their bond only strengthened over time. In 2018, Linda and her husband learned that the girls would soon become separated in the foster care system.
That’s when they decided to step in and temporarily house the two youngest daughters, Princessa and Juanita. They planned to reunite them with their grandparents, who lived in Florida. Since the oldest sister Chelsea recently turned 18, she signed herself out of foster care and chose to live on her own.
So, the Durrence’s brought the two youngest sisters home, and they quickly became part of the family. Linda and her husband treated them like flesh and blood, providing everything they would need to feel comfortable.
After a while, they noticed a huge transformation in the girls. Months before, they had been in a dark, broken place, but love and support allowed them to blossom.
However, the time came to reunite the sisters with their grandparents. When the Durrence’s told them about the plans, the girls pleaded with them to stay. They didn’t want to move around any longer after years of living in foster care.
So, with the grandparents’ blessing, Durrence and her husband officiallythe foster children in May 2019. Linda said she and her family keep in touch with the girls’ grandparents on a regular basis. And, the oldest sibling moved close to the Durrence’s so she could see her sisters more often.
Everything seemed to work out perfectly, except Linda still had a nagging thought in the back of her mind. The half-filled trash bags that the girls brought with them never left her memory. So, when a space became available in a small shopping center nearby, she quickly purchased it. She began working on the store in the second week of January 2022.
Finally, she would have the chance to open Blossom and serve foster kids in need.
The Future Vision for Blossom…Helping Kids in the Foster Care System
The Durrence’s have received donations for the store far beyond what they expected. Since opening in January, people in the local community and even other countries have donated and shipped clothes to them. Several people have offered monetary donations as well.
Family and volunteers have been helping run the store, including Linda’s sister Leslie. Even though Linda’s daughters have jobs and attend college, they still pitch in when they can.
Although Durrence opened Blossom with foster children in mind, anyone in need can shop there. Customers from infants to young adults are welcome to make a private appointment to try on clothes.
Durrence says if they don’t have the correct size in stock, they will purchase the clothes elsewhere for customers. The store also offers books, jewelry, hygiene items, and even toys for young children.
Linda added that the inspiration for the store’s name came from the transformation she noticed in her foster children. After watching them blossom in their new environment, it seemed like the perfect name for the boutique. She hopes that other children who come into the store will have the same opportunity to grow.
In the future, Linda aims to expand the boutique and add an education center. This would help foster children keep up with schoolwork and also provide support to foster parents.
Above all, the Durrence family hopes they can remind others that there are still people who want to help. With all the negative news out there, it’s important to keep faith in humanity and lean on each other in hard times.
Final Thoughts on Woman Who Opened Free Boutique for Foster Children
When the Durrence’s lost their oldest daughter in a tragic car accident, their world turned upside down. However, when they met three foster sisters at church, they took it as a sign from God. They knew that by, they could provide them with a better life. And, it turned out that the Durrence’s needed the girls just as much.
After officially adopting them, Linda got to work on opening Blossom, a free boutique catered to children in the foster care system. They’ve since expanded the business and opened a thrift store next door, offering adult clothing for just a dollar. Linda says that for adults who don’t meet the criteria for Blossom, it’s the perfect solution. Hopefully, this story warmed your soul and reminded you of the beautiful people that still exist in this world.