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Community Coats returns to warm those in need
A coat giveaway is next weekend, Oct. 27, in the Christian Community Center of First United Methodist on Main Street.

While many of us are wrapped up in the joy of sweater weather, it’s easy to ignore the chill in the air as we happily pull out scarves, boots and jackets.

However, some local residents don’t have that luxury.

Junior Auxiliary of McMinnville is once again offering its Coats for the Community program and is expanding the effort with the help of the Warren County School System and Rotary Clubs of McMinnville in a joint project called Community Coats for Kids.

“This year, we will have our big giveaway on Saturday, Oct. 27, in the Christian Community Center building at First United Methodist Church from 10 a.m. until noon,” said Junior Auxiliary member Amanda Collier. “It’s a short event, but we invite anyone who needs winter wear to come because we’ll have a variety of sizes to choose from.”

Since last month, around 100 coats have been collected, but many more are needed. Collier said last year over 300 pieces of clothing were given away to children of all ages, women and men in our community.

President of Junior Auxiliary Samantha Harvey recommends showing up a little early for a better selection, but there is a clothing limit. Each person will be allowed to choose one coat, another clothing item, and an accessory (scarf, gloves, hat, etc.) to go along with it. Additionally, everyone will get to go home with a book of their choice.

The project goal is to collect new or gently used coats and distribute them to families that might not have access to, or be able to afford, cold-weather wear.

Family Resource Center organizer Delia Walker has been working to get donated clothing washed and laundered in preparation for the giveaway.

“There are numerousdrop-offs and if you wash them beforehand, please label the bag newly washed,” explained Walker. “That would be extremely helpful for us.”

Drop-offs can be made anytime during business hours at the following collection locations:

• Ben Lomand Telephone
• All WC schools
• WC Schools Central Office
• Citizens Tri-County Bank – Shane Brock
• Creative Insight Counseling – Carrie Bilbrey-Farmer
• Smile Doctors – Deanna Travis
• Three Star Mall – Brook Holmes
• RSR Kitchen & Bath – Kris Pawlak

• Warren County Trustee – Darlene Bryant

So what happens to the remaining clothing after the giveaway? Harvey explained everything will be transported to the school system Family Resource Center located in the related arts building on the   campus of Warren County Middle School.

“We give some of our donated clothing items to Central Church of Christ because they repair clothing and we send people to them and some clothing goes to Helping Hands Ministry because their money goes to the soup kitchen,” said Walker.

If you have questions about the coat drive or would like to donate, contact either Sharon Hargrove at 507-5180 or Sigourney Younglove at the Chamber Of Commerce at 473-6611.