Seventh annual coat drive under way
Many perfectly good coats, for whatever reason, never see the light of day.
Instead they hang like solitary castoffs in dark closets, unused and unworn.
Local insurance agent Keely Weaver of State Farm is seeing to it that those coats are put to a good use.
She is teaming up once again with Jenny Ruff of Fairfield County Job and Family Services to co-sponsor the seventh annual Winter Coat Collection Drive for Pickerington and Fairfield County.
"We do this coat collection at the same time every year, and it has been successful every year," Weaver said.
She said the faltering economy continues to take a toll on those area residents in need who simply cannot afford proper winter wear.
With winter right around the corner, now is the time when people in need are scrambling to find sturdy outerwear to ward off the adverse elements.
"With tougher economic times, we're finding more people in need of these items," Weaver said.
"This one drive really helps out (Fairfield County Jobs and Family Services) for the winter," she said.
In Pickerington, the State Farm Insurance Agency at 194 W. Church St., on the corner of Church Street and Hill Road, will be a collection location for the seventh straight year.
The collection box can be found on the front porch of the business.
Weaver said those wishing to donate new or gently used winter coats can place them in the drop box right up to Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 22.
She said there is an especially high demand for children's coats this year as well as other winter-related clothing.
"We generally get a lot of coats, but we don't ever get enough children's coats and we also accept hats and gloves," Weaver said.
"Last year we started collecting boots because Jenny Ruff said there was a definite need for boots, so we're collecting boots as well."
Weaver said she expects her office location to be the recipient of a steady stream of donations this week.
"Last year, we probably (received) around 400 coats just at my office in that short amount of time," she said.
As with previous years, all the items donated are distributed by the Fairfield County Sheriff's Office to area families and individuals who have been identified as being in need.
Those who miss the drop-off deadline this year can still drop off donations at the Fairfield County Job and Family Services (FCJFS) at 239 W. Main St. in Lancaster.
Weaver said that families and individuals in need of assistance can contact FCJFS at (740) 652-7676.
"We want people to know that if they are in need of assistance, they can call there," she said.