Cibola High's 'Cougar Closet' seeks holiday gifts for loved ones | KOB 4

Cibola High's 'Cougar Closet' seeks holiday gifts for loved ones

Emily Jaceks
December 12, 2018 06:53 AM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.—A unique boutique is the newest place to shop at Cibola High School, catering to students who may not have the latest brands or clothes with the best fit.


“I just tell them hi, my name is Ashley. I run Cougar Closet. And I’m like everything is free. Take a look around,” Ashley Winner said.

From prom gowns to pumps, everything is organized and ready to be picked up by a new owner.

“We had one boy that came in and he was wearing huge old boots. He was like dying in. But we got him in some tennis shoes and then I was like alright…that's free. You want to try on a sweater? He was like wait, everything’s free? Yeah, and he ended up changing into new jeans and a new sweater. It was a really joyful moment, so he was really excited,” Winner said.

With 17 homeless students at Cibola High, items like these are especially important.

“We have everything from shampoo, conditioner, brand-new toothbrushes, and toothpaste. We have makeup that the girls go crazy over. We can’t get enough samples in here for the girls,” Winner said.

But it's her latest project, spreading holiday cheer by collecting gifts students can wrap and give to their loved ones, that really warms her heart.

“We just let kids know, I mean, if you have somebody you know who wants a little purse you can take this,” Winner said.

She hopes this spirit of giving can continue long after Christmas is over, and inspire others to get involved and help the less fortunate in their community.

“I myself will help them get it organized and know that it can happen. This doesn't just apply to Cibola. It can apply to any school,” Winner said.

If you'd like to make a Christmas donation to the Cougar Closet, bring your items during school hours to Cibola High School. Suggested items are things like gift cards, coffee mugs, nail polish sets, and wrapping paper.


Emily Jaceks

Copyright 2019 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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