Partner Stories: Donovin Darius

The Donovin Darius Makes Clothing Distribution Part of Every Community

Outreach Through a Partnership With PSMJax.

 

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The mission of the Donovin Darius Foundation is to support and empower young people and those in under served communities to pursue the best versions of themselves. Sometimes that happens through the contribution of a new shirt, a new dress, fresh undergarments, or new shoes.

Inspired and led by former Jaguars safety Donovin Darius, the Foundation’s participation in outreach events across the region is a strong testament to their belief in helping those in need. Recognizing dignity as an important part of that process, many of their outreach events include the distribution of new or gently used clothing. Eugene Darius, Donovin’s brother, is tasked with bringing this outreach vision to life. At a recent clothing distribution at Trinity Rescue Mission, Darius spoke with PSMJax about the Foundation’s work and the value of the partnership between the two agencies.

“We support every positive outreach in the city that we can,” said Darius. “We support homeless feedings, juveniles in jails, and children. At homeless shelters, we feed the residents, provide clothes and haircuts, and give motivational speeches.” Darius shared that his family lived in poverty, giving them a unique understanding of the struggles of the population they serve. “Our purpose is to serve others, and Donovin has leveraged his brand to accomplish that and to partner with other agencies to serve the needy.” The Foundation often participates with Bold Endeavors, a nonprofit run by Eugene Darius and his wife, as well as Impact Church to sponsor community give-away events that include the distribution of food, clothing, and other necessities.

Providing new clothes to individuals is an important component of family outreach events that serve anywhere from 50-300 individuals. “We’ve all seen a homeless person. Imagine what a new shirt, a new pair of shoes, and a haircut can do for someone’s morale,” said Darius. “The partnership with PSMJax has really given us the ability to impact the lives of the people we serve.” Receiving fresh, new clothing can be profoundly impactful. “At every event, whether to serve the homeless or other individuals, I have personally seen tears, laughter, and joy,” said Darius.

The Foundation was connected with PSMJax through Sylvester Pinckney with the Kids Hope Alliance. Pinckney knew about the Foundation’s work and told them about Presbyterian Social Ministries. “It’s been a wonderful relationship ever since,” said Darius. The Foundation used to collect clothing for distribution from individual donors. This took a great deal of time to sort and valuable space in Darius’ home garage. By using PSMJax for clothing, the storage problem is solved, and items come sorted and labeled. “When I receive items, they are labeled by size, color, long sleeve/short sleeve, black/white socks. Everything is so organized that it makes our job easier. When we distribute the clothing, someone can just walk up and tell us what size they need, and we have it ready,” Darius said. With PSMJax, the Foundation is assured that the clothing is good quality and available in every size – for men, women, and children. “We walk in now with enough goods for everyone – some of which we used to have to pay for.

It has saved us thousands of dollars.” The highly organized inventory also makes it easier to meet individual needs. “For some young people in high school, I was able to put in a request to Neil at PSM, and he fulfilled it in abundance and changed those young people’s lives.”

Darius touched on the commitment of PSMJax to connect those who have with those who need, saying, “They put their donations back into the hands of people who need them.” Darius expressed gratitude for every event impacted by the donations of PSMJax. “Imagine a family – a man, a woman, and their

children – walking away with bags of clothing. And imagine what that has done for that family, how it changes their lives.”

Donovin Darius website

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