Local girl collecting socks for the homeless

Date Published: 
Dec. 22, 2017

Coastal Point • Shaun M. Lambert: Selah Wilson, 9, Katie Hughes, 3, and Allie Hughes, 1, stand in front of the sock donation bin at Lord’s Landscaping in Millville.Coastal Point • Shaun M. Lambert: Selah Wilson, 9, Katie Hughes, 3, and Allie Hughes, 1, stand in front of the sock donation bin at Lord’s Landscaping in Millville.This holiday season, and throughout the coming year, a local 9-year-old is focusing on helping those who are less fortunate, by collecting socks.

“It’s for the homeless,” said Selah Wilson, showing off a “Selah’s Socks for Souls” bin inside Lord’s Landscaping in Millville that was already brimming with socks.

Last year, Wilson, a fourth-grader at John M. Clayton Elementary School, started collecting men’s, women’s and children’s socks to donate to Halo, a homeless shelter in Salisbury, Md.

“They were talking about socks and how they always needed them,” said Wilson. “I like it because it helps other people to stay warm. Some of them walk miles to go to work and stuff… It’s what God wants us to do.”

At first, Wilson was just collecting the socks at her elementary school, where only teachers were able to donate.

“Thank you to Ms. Donna Toomey — she would stop by every day and bring socks.”

So, Wilson expanded the effort, and is now collecting socks at Mariner’s Bethel United Methodist Church and Lord’s Landscaping, with the hope of getting more people involved.

“People can go out and buy socks and bring them here,” she said. “If we get other people to help us, we could get more socks and we could help more people than just a few.”

“Selah actually called me and asked if she could put her bin in here,” said Amy Hughes, the office manager at Lord’s. “She decorated it all herself, and we got to have it in here, and it’s been wonderful. We’ve had people come in who have never been here before but heard about Selah and wanted to bring socks.”

Wilson volunteers once a month at Halo with other members of Mariner’s CRASH youth group.

“It’s fun. I get to play with the kids and talk with people,” she said, noting there’s one gentleman at the shelter she now calls “Pop-pop.”

“A lot of them are like family,” added the Rev. Woody Wilson, Selah’s dad and pastor at Mariner’s. “They’re very loving people. They don’t just look for someone giving them a handout. A lot of them feel, ‘This is where I am today, but tomorrow might be different.’”

So far, Selah Wilson has collected nearly 1,000 socks, with a goal of collecting 10,000 pairs.

“Pastor Woody” said he and his wife, Christina — the youth director at Mariner’s — are extremely proud of Selah for wanting to support those in need.

“We’re very proud of her. She came home and said we needed to do more than just go and serve. ‘Here’s a specific thing we can do,’” he said. “It was all her idea. She did the bins all by herself and came up with ‘Selah’s Socks for Souls’ on her own.”

Along with donating the socks directly to Halo, Selah Wilson will also help distribute them at homeless camps in the area.

“We’re blessed with what we have,” she said, noting that it’s important to help others.

While Socks for Souls isn’t Selah Wilson’s first foray into the world of volunteerism, it is her first solo project, and one that she hopes to continue to expand.

“We’ll go wherever we’re invited,” added Pastor Woody, noting that Selah will happily make more collection bins for businesses that would like to be a donation site.

Selah Wilson also thanked Hughes for helping to spread the word of her sock drive through Lord’s business advertising.

“And, she let us put our box in her store so people can donate here.”

“I think it’s wonderful,” said Hughes. “I think it’s been great the community has come together to support her… One idea can make a really big difference at Christmas.”

For more information about Selah’s Socks for Souls, or how to get a bin, contact Mariner’s Bethel United Methodist Church at (302) 539-9510. Mariner’s Bethel is located at 81 Central Avenue in Ocean View. Lord’s Landscaping is located at 35577 Atlantic Avenue in Millville. For more information, call (302) 539-6119 or visit www.lordslandscaping.com.