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Chicago free clothing closets, furniture banks and school supplies.

A number of clothing closets, furniture banks and non-profit organizations in Chicago provide free clothes or household items to families and individuals in need. There may also be free winter coats, back to school uniforms or supplies, furniture for a new home or apartment and so much more. Many of the centers are based in, or partner with, charities such as local churches, the Salvation Army, or Catholic Charities.

Each agency varies. In addition to providing free or low priced clothes, they may also have or sell items like furniture or household products. Or there can be free birthday toys for kids or pots and pans, electronics and more. Seasonal programs, such as free school supplies, backpacks, and even Christmas programs are offered in Cook County as well.

The clothing closets, often in partnership with the low cost thrift stores, can help relieve financial stress from working poor families, children, and seniors by providing necessities such as winter coats, shoes, clothes, work uniforms, and toiletries. Items provided by the Cook County Illinois centers are usually gently used, but some programs may distribute new items or vouchers that people can use to shop. Churches, shelters, and charities also can refer people to a local center. As one of the greatest needs in Chicago is for free winter coats for kids as parents often need help to make it through the cold winter.

While conditions and oftentimes restrictions are in place for clothing closets, the thrift stores in Chicago are usually open to everyone, regardless of their income. Some clothing centers may have income limits and restrictions in place. Or they may limit how many times someone can stop by to shop for free clothes.

Call 708-388-7800
Household items and clothing for veterans, current military members, and their immediate family members.

Avenues To Independence Resale Shoppe
7700 W Touhy Ave, Edison Park, dial (773) 631-6230
The store sells gently used items. There may be beds, couches, tables, chairs, appliances and so much more.




The Ark
6450 N California Ave, Chicago, Illinois 60645
Phone: (773) 973-1000
The organization may have clothing, household items, furniture, and appliances.

Bridge to Success
1236 S. Halsted, Chicago, IL 60607, 312.733.9742
Supports job seekers and low/no-income men and women
Most clothing needs to be work related. Provides professional/business clothing, shoes, boots, ccontemporary/in season men & women’s casual clothing, and related accessories. Will also have information on local employment programs too. The kids can get the educational items they need, including for school or college.

Brown Elephant
Dial 773-549-5943
Distributes walkers, clothing, crutches, and wheelchairs. Senior citizens in Chicago can also get free medical equipment and the non-profit can help the disabled too.

Cancer Federation – Dial 800-962-3260
American Cancer Society patients can get free clothing, household items, toys, books, and more.

Catholic Charities Emergency Assistance
Address: 721 N. LaSalle, Chicago, Illinois
Provides free or low cost clothing, household wares and personal hygiene kits. This charity may also have financial aid for bills, but most of the aid is material. This may be back to school uniforms, bags, coats, and other free supplies for students in Cook County. More on Catholic Charities in Chicago.





Chicago Abused Women Coalition
1160 N. Kedzie, Chicago, IL
Main 773-489-9081
Items for victims of domestic violence and abused women.

Chicago and Cook County Furniture Bank
Address is 4801 S. Whipple Street
Chicago, IL 60632
Phone - 312-752-0211
This is a client choice furniture bank. Thousands have been assisted over multiple years. Low income families, veterans, single mothers, etc. who qualify can pick out what they need. Lamps, refurnished computers, beds, mattresses, mirrors, pots and pans for a kitchen, appliances and dozens of other free furniture items may be offered - based donations.

Address of clothing center - 1815 W. Central Road, Arlington Heights, IL
Children and adults with developmental disabilities can get clothing, furniture, and other household items. Jeans, pants, belts, winter boots, hats, and many other goods are available.

Encore and More
107 Central Avenue, Wilmette, IL
Phone: 847-853-8888
Jewish Women can get small furniture and appliances as well as clothing.

Family Rescue
Phone: 773-375-1918
Victims of abuse, domestic violence and their children can receive free clothing, coats, shoes, computers, toys and other aid from this clothing closet and thrift store.

Goodwill Industries
Phone: 888-353-6400
Distributes household items, clothing, furniture, work attire, and more. Donations are needed by Goodwill, and this non-profit also helps job seekers. Free suits, dresses, slacks, and other items can be passed out.

The Inner Voice
1621 W. Walnut, Chicago, Illinois
Dial 312-666-8110
Call or stop by for clothing, office and cleaning supplies and household items, and even box springs and mattresses. They are part of the Chicago’s Emergency Shelter Network.





Junior League of North Shore Thrift House
920 Chicago Ave. in Evanston Illinois
(847) 328-5778

Lamb’s Farm Thrift Shop
Telephone - 847-327-9053
Sells at low cost furniture, clothing, household products and more. There may be lamps, kitchen tables, sofas, chairs and many other items for sale.

Lions Club - They have multiple locations in Cook County.
Phone: 630-571-5466
Low income individuals can get free prescription glasses and/or hearing aids. There is also an annual free school supply giveaway for kindergarden to high school students from low income families or single mom households.

Luther High School North Thrift Shop
6059 W Addison St.
The school sell low cost books, bookbags, jackets, and other items. Students who come from immigrant or very low income families in Chicago may qualify for a free school supply assistance programs too.

Chesed Fund
7045 N. Ridgeway
Lincolnwood, Illinois
Main number is 847.679.7799
A number of assistance programs are offered. There are free cars, washing machines, winter clothes, high chairs or strollers for new moms and more. The Cook County non-profit also has free appliances such as refrigerators at the furniture bank.

Chicago Free Furniture Bank
4800 West Roosevelt Road
Chicago, Il, 60644
Main number is 312-752-0211
The non-profit collects, and then passes out, free furniture to the needy. Beds, couches, tables, sofas, bed frames, appliances, pianos, and even clothes are offered.

Mt. Sinai Hospital Resale Shop
814 W. Diversey, Chicago, IL
This low cost thrift store. Computer, electronics, pots and pans, appliances, and so much more may be sold.

National Coalition Against Domestic Violence
Call for information on assistance and social services - 303-839-1852

ORT Thrift Shop
Phone: 847-433-1697
This Chicago Thrift store sells gently used/new household items, work or school clothing, backpacks, shoes, small appliances, toys, and much more. It works alongside the location immediately below.

ORT Resale Shop
915 Chicago Ave., Evanston, Illinois
Dial (847) 864-6099

Pacific Garden Mission
Phone: 312-243-2480
The homeless, working poor, seniors, and very low income can receive items from this clothing closet.





Poised for Success
312 S. Westmore Rd. Lombard, Illinois
Call - 630-691-1455
Women who are looking for a job, and who receive public/financial assistance, can call this non-profit charity for professional work attire. Seasonal types of free clothes, suits and more are offered.

Salvation Army – Some of the locations in the Cook County Illinois region are below.
2151 W Devon Ave, West Rogers Park
3301 W Montrose Ave, Albany Park
509 North Union Avenue, Chicago, IL 60654, (312) 738-4360
5112 South Ashland Avenue, Chicago, IL 60609, call (773) 737-3335
5713 W Chicago Ave, Austin
2941 N Central Ave, Cragin
Phone: 888-574-2587
A leading social service organization in Chicago and Cook County Illinois. The center offers a number of programs, including a clothing closet, food pantry, Christmas assistance, and financial help for bills and rent. Some sites also distribute free furniture. There are also free back to school supply drives with backpacks, laptops and more. Specialists will try to address the root cause of the hardship. Read more on free assistance programs from Chicago Salvation Army.

Sarah’s Circle
4750 N. Sheridan Road, Suite #220
773-728-1991 ext. 301
The homeless can receive items from this organization. They include toiletries (trial size), shampoos,  toothbrushes/toothpaste, lotions, mouthwash, shower caps, women’s razors, conditioner and more.

The Sharing Connection
5111 Chase Ave., Downers Grove, IL
Main number - 630-971-0565
Works with local community action agencies and non-profits in Chicago. Provides baby clothing, furniture, appliances, and more.

Soles 4 Souls
Phone: 866-521-SHOE
Provides shoes, winter boots, and more to children and students.

The Sports Shed
872 S Milwaukee Ave BOX #112
Libertyville, IL 60048
Phone: 847-719-7320

Offers gently used sporting equipment. Many single parents, both mom and dads, use this site. Students and youth can get baskets balls, football equipment, and other surplus items.

Tri-County Thrift
Address - 457 W. Liberty, Waconda, IL
Phone: 847-526-0383
Partners with the non-profit Tri-County Pregnancy & Parenting Services. Distributes free clothing, toys, books, holiday gifts, and household items.

Unique Thrift
4441 West Diversey Avenue, Chicago, IL 60639
Main phone (773) 227-2282
A second location of Unique Thrift is at 4445 N Sheridan, Uptown Chicago. Both centers will provide gently used goods, clothing, and more to the general public at affordable rates.

Vietnam Veterans of America
Former military members can get clothing, gently used shoes, and household items.





Village Discount Outlet
Location - 3301 West Lawrence Avenue, Chicago, Call (773) 564-9310
4898 North Clark Street, Chicago, Illinois, telephone (866) 545-3836
2043 W Roscoe St., Roscoe Village
6419 South Kedzie Avenue, Chicago, Illinois 60629, (866) 545-3836

White Elephant Resale Shop
2380 N Lincoln Ave, Lincoln Park

Women’s Club of Evanston – Dreams Delivered
Phone: 847-475-3800
Evening wear and accessories for underprivileged girls and teenagers, so they can go to the prom.


By Jon McNamara

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