Sammy's Window provides direct services to foster and adoptive families in the form of clothing, food, hygiene items, furniture, school supplies, and baby equipment. To assist our families with donations of these items, or to host a drive, contact Mark Hay.
- Location: 509 S. Cavelier, Springfield, MO 65802
- Hours: Tuesday nights from 4pm-7pm, Fridays from 9am-1pm, or by appointment
Frequently picked up and brought into foster care as a result of police intervention or emergency room visits, children often only have the clothes on their backs. Missouri's very modest annual clothing allowance (under $300 per year) falls far short of covering clothing necessities. Filled with new or gently used items donated by individuals and community groups, Sammy's Window provides quality clothing to foster, adoptive and kinship families free of charge. Staffed by dedicated volunteers, the closet strives to be user friendly and offer a wide variety of seasonally appropriate options for any child or teen.
Foster, adoptive and kinship families may access clothing any time they have a need, and receive up to four outfits per child/per season. Typical hours of operation are Tuesday nights from 4pm to 7pm, Fridays from 9am to 1pm. We are also open by appointment for parents who can't visit during typical hours or for parents who have accepted an emergency placement and need clothing immediately.
Birthday Gifts through "Wish I May"
Sammy's Window partners with Wish I May, a nonprofit organization providing "Happy Birthdays" to documented children in care in the Springfield area. The children we reach are children whose families are experiencing extreme financial difficulties and find it impossible to provide even the smallest birthday celebration. Wish I May welcomes foster parents to request birthday bags for children in your care by visiting FosterAdopt Connect to fill out a form at least two weeks prior to your child's birthday.
Food, Furniture, and More
- Location: 509 S. Cavelier, Springfield, MO 65802
- Hours: Tuesday nights from 4pm-7pm, Fridays from 9am-1pm
Food assistance for families caring for abused and neglected children is a critical need, particularly for relative or kinship families who may be retired and had not planned on raising children at this point in their lives. The additional costs associated with providing food for growing kids can be overwhelming; Missouri's reimbursement rate only provides for about a third of the actual cost of care, as was documented in the "Hitting the MARC" study published in 2007 by Children's Rights, the University of Maryland School of Social Work, and the National Foster Parent's Association.
The addition of one or more children to the family, which happens much more frequently as sibling groups come into foster care together, can result in substantial increases to family's food budgets. Foster families typically don't qualify for income-based food assistance through church or other poverty service organizations because they must demonstrate adequate income in order to become licensed. This can leave them in a catch-22 of sorts that may cost them the ability to offer their home and family to children in need.
Supplied by generous community donations and food drives, and managed with the help of a cadre of dedicated volunteers, Sammy's Window provides families with the assistance necessary to stretch their tight food budgets as children come into their homes. These food supplements help ease the gap between the low monthly stipend and the actual costs of providing food for hungry kids, so that willing families can make room for one additional plate, or more, at the table.
How You Can Help
- Share our mission with your church or business. We love to speak to groups to raise awareness for the needs of kids in foster care.
- Donate new and gently used clothing items, beds, dressers, baby equipment, hygiene items, or food.
- Host a drive at your church, organization, or business.
Contact Mark Hay for more information.
The Sammy's Window Story
On July 11, 2008 Mark Hay sat at his Dad’s bedside, along with his step-mother, and watched his father, Samuel L. Hay, peacefully take his last breath here on earth. Although his heart no longer beats physically on this earth, his heart beats for others in the formation of this ministry.
As a boy, at only 6 years of age, Sammy was forced to leave his home and his family because of financial hardships and family health issues. He was placed on a bus and sent to live with his aunt and uncle in Fair Grove, MO. He used to tell Mark that the first few days there he would sit and look out the window trying to find something that made sense to him again. His world, as he had known it, no longer existed.
Mark states, “My Dad was a very unique man who had a heart for helping others. Dad spent many years helping people in Kenya, the Fiji Islands, the Philippines, as well as several other countries. He taught them how to better their lives through learning new skills. He really had a passion for this God-given ability and he had a call on his life. He liked taking part in providing answers to problems and to give people a hand up. He would be the first to tell you that he was not a perfect man, but I’m here to tell you he was a good man.”
Sammy’s Window strives to support children in foster care who are trying to find their way in a new home as a living memorial to Samuel L. Hay. Our desire is to show them that there are people out there who care.