PITMAN, New Jersey (WPVI) -- Elissa Darrow's path to becoming director of Angels Community Outreach started as a survivor of domestic abuse and a house fire.
Along with her daughters, she had to resort to shelters and become recipients to other charitable acts.
"When we did get back on our feet, my daughter Katelyn was like: 'I want to do something to help,'" said Elissa Darrow.
Darrow's 12-year-old daughter at the time was the catalyst of Angels Community Outreach.
"I became head angel when she went off to college," said Darrow.
Over a decade later, Darrow operates with a team of volunteers providing necessities such as food, toiletries, and a free clothing closet.
"Families get to come into here and shop for free. They can pick out what they need and it just gives them a sense of normalcy," said Darrow.
With recipients often struggling to pay their expenses, Angels Community Outreach seeks to relieve the cost of expanding their wardrobe.
"I feel like they're angels. It's getting cold, the kids need some long shirts and coats and stuff like that. So...it's really really helping us," said recipient, Rayniece Artis.
Elissa Darrow not only survived domestic abuse and a house fire, but she also survived a battle with COVID-19 in 2021.
"I was in the ICU and it took me a good year to recover... I'm on the oxygen but it doesn't keep me down, I keep going," said Darrow.
Darrow persists through challenges, and intends to keep helping people in the community in the future.