Topeka consignment store and donors help foster families

Topeka consignment store and donors help foster families
Published: Mar. 19, 2023 at 11:02 PM CDT
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - Rhea Lana’s, a pop-up consignment store, provides a marketplace for families and individuals to shop name-brands at budget friendly prices.

During the week-long semi-annual events, consigners are able to sell their gently used items so other local families can recycle them for their own needs. However, when the week comes to an end, Rhea Lana’s gives consigners the option to donate to local foster families.

“We put out an all call to our consigners early in the season and explain if you donate your items who they benefit. Each season we have about 25 and 30 foster families that will come in and take advantage of the free closet,” said Amber Bartel, the Topeka location owner.

For foster families, like the Gragg-Heartzells, Rhea Lana’s puts ease on their finances, making the transition for a new foster child a little bit smoother.

“Having different ages of kids come through our home never knowing like what specific size they’re going to wear,” said Grace Gragg-Heartzell, a Topeka foster parent. “Events like these being able to get clothes like these that are name brand, but aren’t name brand prices enables us to send clothes with the kids when they do either go home or move on to their next placement without breaking the bank to keep them clothed, and be able to meet their needs.”

Foster families chose from children’s clothing of all ages, baby supplies, toys, and more. The families are able to take as much as they want and all free of charge.

“Foster families get the call in the middle of the night, they may get it in the crack of dawn, and it’s a child in need of care and so we’re glad that we’re able to serve those families,” said Bartel. “They don’t know whether they’re getting one or two; or whether they’re getting a whole set of siblings. At least this way they can have a good supply for back-up when they need it when those calls come in.”

Consigners, shoppers, and foster families can expect to benefit from Rhea Lana’s unique model again in September when it opens back-up for the fall and winter sale.