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Coats For Kids Campaign Begins

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MEDFORD, Ore. — NewsWatch 12 is kicking off the annual Coats for Kids campaign. Dropping off a coat is easy, and everyone has a reason. Gary Eakin says he’s doing it, because he hopes someone would do the same for his family.

“I was a single parent for 15 years and went through some rough times so I wanted to help out other people like me,” said Eakin.

Volunteers also know the need is high, but so is the generosity.

“We usually get around 4,000 coats, about 2,500 of them go to the schools, starting with Head Start through high school,” explained John Zupan, with Windermere Van Vleet. “25 or so locations that we have people picking up anywhere from one to four times a week, so it keeps them busy.”

Employees from Windermere Van Vleet are already rolling up their sleeves.

“We’ll be involved in picking coats up from the drop locations, we’ll also take them out to the cleaners, then when we get them back to [NewsWatch12’s] studio we’ll sort them into sizes and bundle them, and deliver them to the schools,” said Zupan.

All of the new and gently used coats that you donate to coats for kids will be given to local schools to help children in need. It’s an effort that those involved want to expand beyond Southern Oregon.

“A lot of kids in this valley can use coats, and it’s a really nice thing to do,” said Zupan. “A matter of fact, Windermere is now doing this in Portland and other areas as well because of what you guys have started down here.”

For others, they hope they can just help a child in need and that feeling…

“Warm and fuzzy,” said Eakin.

For a complete list of drop-off locations, click here. NewsWatch12 be collecting coats from now until October 24th.