Who we are

Second Chances provides clothing to homeless and very low-income people in Cambridge and Somerville by working with local homelessness and social service agencies where they receive shelter and services. If you are a shelter or service provider located in Cambridge or Somerville, we would love to find a way to work with you to provide free clothing to your Cambridge and Somerville clients.

Mission statement

Second Chances puts donated clothing to work for our community, diverting clothing, shoes, and accessories from local landfills while helping our neighbors in need take their first steps toward brighter futures.

History

Second Chances began its work in 2003, and incorporated and received its 501(c)(3) nonprofit designation in March 2005. Our service area includes Cambridge and Somerville, Massachusetts and adjacent communities.

Second Chances is the only program providing free clothing, shoes, accessories, and gift cards to hundreds of homeless and lower-income Somerville and Cambridge residents annually while keeping nearly 200,000 pounds of textiles out of landfills. Second Chances collects donations of clothing, shoes, and accessories at bins located at area businesses and through corporate clothing drives. We partner with local shelters and service providers to help their clients take their first steps toward brighter futures.

How is Second Chances different?

Second Chances’ clothing donation program is unique in the way we work almost invisibly through existing service providers. On The Rise, Somerville Homeless Coalition, Just A Start House, Transition House, Vinfen, HomeStart, Wayside, and Somerville Cambridge Elder Services are some of our most consistent partners, and we add new providers to our network every year.

By partnering with local housing, shelter, and service providers, we make their clients’ already difficult lives a little easier by delivering the clothing they need where and when they need it.

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Donations to Second Chances

A successful clothing drive means a full van! These donations are headed to our warehouse for sorting, hanging, and storage so that we can pick out great outfits when they're needed by our clients.

Gentle Giant voluteers

Gentle Giant has moved our clothing donation bins pro bono several times over the years. We are so grateful for their help and commitment to our community.