Mary first met Chrissy Hester as she enrolled her grandchildren in school. Mary had recently assumed guardianship of her 4 grandchildren, and she needed more than just school registration. The kids, ages 3, 5, 7, and 10, needed clothing, underwear, socks, shoes and backpacks. Mary didn’t have beds or a kitchen table to serve a meal. Chrissy further learned that Mary wasn’t just parenting her own grandchildren, she was also caring for other family members and even neighbor kids.
Chrissy was able to get the grandchildren fitted and ready for school with the help of district employees. Over time, Mary received furniture, bedding, dishes and other essentials as Chrissy coordinated donations from community resources and friends.
Mary, grandmother of a Chrissy's Closet family
“Chrissy didn’t just give us stuff, she gave us a chance to build a good life.”
Before Chrissy even had a “Closet”, she provided clothing and other essentials to hundreds of students in need. As a teacher, counselor and principal, Chrissy recognized that children needed to be safe, clean and warm to be ready to learn. Now, Chrissy continues her service for CSISD as Director of Student Services and is responsible for the physical and emotional needs of over 13,000 children, including 35% of whom qualify for free or reduced lunch.
“Chrissy’s Closet” officially opened in 2016 as a program of CSISD Education Foundation, named to honor Chrissy’s 30 years of service. With the generosity of local businesses, schools, churches and volunteers, Chrissy’s Closet continues to provide supplies for students and staff in need. Chrissy shared, “I’m blown away by the generosity of this community, and even more humbled when our recipient families come back to contribute to others.”