One Small Step (dba, Clothes Cabin) was formed in 2001 by a small circle of friends to provide socks to agencies that served the poor. More than 160,000 pairs of socks and large quantities of clothing were distributed over eight years. In 2008, after the clothing bank in Chandler closed, the women of One Small Step located space to operate a small emergency clothing bank for Chandler residents.
From the beginning, One Small Step’s mission was to provide clothing relief to those who could not afford to buy the clothes they needed. The organization holds extremely high standards of quality for the clothing and the facility from which it operates, demonstrating respect for the clients. The number of clients increased steadily, forcing another move into larger facilities in 2010.
In the spring of 2011, Clothes Cabin began offering its homeless clients free laundry service.
With client services growing incrementally each year the One Small Step Governing Board set forth on a mission to begin a capital campaign and purchase a new building of our own.
The capital campaign “Hope Grows Here” was launched in 2019 and by November 2019 One Small Step took another leap into the larger, more functional building it operates in today.
The new building allows for expanded selection of clothing, increased ability to serve more clients, increased storage for better inventory, and an in-house laundry facility for our Homeless Assistance Program. Two brand-new service features were added with the new building; a classroom that will offer free classes focused on life skills and a shower that is available through our Homeless Assistance Program.
All the operations of Clothes Cabin and Friends Boutique are accomplished by approximately 70 regular volunteers, who give about 900 hours a month to the organization. The staff of One Small Step consists of the Executive Director, and an Operations Assistant. The largest expense is the necessary cost of the program delivery site. Mortgage, utilities, insurance, and supplies account for more than half the expenses of the program.
The largest source of funding for Clothes Cabin and its services is from individuals like you.
One Small Step is a Qualifying Charitable Organization for purposes of the Arizona Tax Credit and benefits greatly from cash donations of $800 or less as a result of the tax credit. (See Donate for more information.) Foundations, corporations, churches, and community organizations provide the next largest segment of revenue; however, sales of donated (non-clothing) items through Friends Resale Boutique have provided the organization with an increasing amount of earned revenue.
One Small Step has a Governing Board of five members, two of which have been with the organization from its inception. An Advisory Board of 8 to 12 members advises the Governing Board at quarterly meetings. Its members represent stakeholders from large corporations, small business, banking, law, community service organizations, marketing, city government, and the volunteers.