Keeping Our Community Warm

As we launch into another Coats for Kids & Families campaign, I am blown away by the generosity of this community. For over 20 years, we have come together to provide warm winter coats and outerwear to our neighbours in need.

In 2011, nearly 11,000 coats were distributed in the Alberta Capital Region. To put it into perspective, that’s 11,000 people who would have spent an Alberta winter without a warm coat. I can’t imagine.

Each day I wake up in a warm home greeted by my two good natured, four-legged friends, whose morning greetings are always friendly. I pull on my sweatpants, throw on a hoodie and begin rummaging through my toque bin – priority of the morning is taking the dogs out for their morning romp.

We head to the dog park and about 30 minutes in, my toes are tingling and I’m feeling a chill. I head home for a hot shower and my morning coffee, and a few minutes later I’m warm and ready to start the day. I pack my lunch, grab my warm coat and boots and I’m out the door.

Sadly, the day starts very differently for many of our neighbours, relatives and friends. More than 123,000 people in the Alberta Capital Region live in poverty, and limited resources create limitations many of us can’t even imagine. But we can provide help in a very basic and necessary way.

That new or gently worn coat sitting in your closet, or the winter items your children have outgrown will make the world of difference to a parent working outdoors, a child waiting for the school bus, or a mother who must choose between groceries or winter coats for her kids.

Please, as you prepare for another Alberta winter and carry on with your day-to-day routine, consider making a contribution to Coats for Kids & Families. 

Donations can be made at any Page the Cleaner location in Edmonton, Sherwood Park and St. Albert until December 6, 2012.

If you are in need of a warm winter coat, call 211 (780.482.INFO for calls placed outside of Edmonton and area).

Check out the official Coats for Kids & Families video below, or visit for more information.

Written by Christa Broadfoot, Director of Discovery, United Way of the Alberta Capital Region

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