In order to make sure community members are prepared for the cold weather before it actually hits, United Way’s 2015 Coats for Kids and Families collection will be starting much earlier than last year.
Along with partners, KPMG LLP and TD Canada Trust, United Way will be collecting gently used winter gear from now until Nov. 13.
“In 2014, United Way and KPMG LLP distributed over 200 coats and more than 100 pairs of mitts, hats and scarves,” said Connolly Tate-Mitchell, United Way’s volunteer coordinator.
“It was a great success, but by the time we delivered them to local organizations, we had already had a number of cold days. Starting the collection earlier will mean that people will have warm coats before they actually need them.
“To most of us, 5 or 10 below might not feel all that cold,” she says, “but there are people here who live on the streets. They’re spending much more time outdoors. There may be families here who are new to Canadian winters and aren’t prepared for the sub-zero temperatures.
“And there are cases where families might be faced with the choice between buying new coats and paying the heating bill and they shouldn’t have to choose. These are the reasons we do this.”
This year, item drop-off will be easier than ever. The four TD Canada Trust branches in Lethbridge are serving as additional collection sites with the secondary goal of engaging the younger generation of employees and connecting them to the community.
Following the collection, staff and volunteers from program partners will sort and deliver the items to a number of local organizations for distribution to children and families who need them.
Donations of clean, gently used coats, mitts, scarves, new hats and other winter-wear will be welcomed at any of the four Lethbridge TD Canada Trust branches, KPMG LLP in Lethbridge Centre Tower, as well as at the United Way office until November 13.
For more information, Please contact United Way at 403-327-1700 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.