Dec. 2017 Jefferson Award Winner: Tiffani Kruger

STEVENS POINT (WAOW) – A Stevens Point woman finds clothing for children who come from needy families, feeds the hungry and provides shelter to the homeless.

For her volunteer work, Tiffani Krueger, co-founder of Evergreen Community Initiatives, is our December Jefferson Award winner.

“I have been blessed to have the most amazing support team of volunteers and best friends,” Krueger said.

Because of her passion for helping others, the Downtown Mission Church is home to several projects that help the needy.

Tiff’s Kids Closet provides clothing for children. It began four years ago when Krueger noticed many of the children arriving for a weekly feeding program wore clothing that was tattered or too small. As a foster parent who has cared for 16 children, she knew she had to do something.

She started with a “stash of clothing” in her home, she said. “When I couldn’t meet the need, I went to Facebook.”

Tiff’s Kids Closet now provides clothing to hundreds of children monthly.

“It is so wonderful to see the children when they arrive. They look around and are just amazed that they get all these clothes,” volunteer Dee Ruetten said. “When they leave, they give you that hug and say thanks. That it so heartwarming and gives you the desire to keep going.”

Krueger also helps organize volunteers for the warming center at a time of growing need, especially among the elderly and disabled. “There is a significant increase in that population seeking shelter,” she said.

To make sure homeless people have access to warm outdoor gear, Krueger organized Tree Huggers with the Girl Scouts to provide free hats, scarves and mittens  which are tied around trees near the library for people to take.

While Krueger downplays her accomplishments, she is quick to encourage others to lend a helping hand.

“People just need to find their inspiration and go and not wait for life to happen for them,” she said.

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