Most of us take for granted being able to put on a warm coat before we step outside this winter, but imagine if you couldn’t?
Thanks to the sports outerwear retailer Zumiez, CCH organizers have begun distributing warm jackets and winter wear to hundreds of homeless boys and teens, men and women with whom we work in Chicago. Please note: Coats are being distributed during shelter outreach by organizers, and not from CCH’s office.
CCH is very grateful for Zumiez generous support – Zumiez’s 7th annual shipment to CCH totaled 49 boxes. There are more than 300 jackets, 150 hoodies, 120 blankets, 180 caps and 72 pairs of both socks and gloves.
One of the first people to get a new coat this week was helped by Pastor Charles Austin, a community leader at CCH. Charles saw one of our youth leaders, Cassie Sahler, wearing only a sweatshirt while waiting in the cold for a bus. So Charles phoned CCH to see if Zumiez had donated coats again.
“To see her without a coat, transitioning from being homeless – something as simple as a winter coat can make a world of difference,” he noted.
“Cassie had been borrowing friends’ coats whenever she could. She was very happy – she said her new jacket is ‘the perfect size, the perfect color and the timing was perfect!’” said J.D. Klippenstein, an organizing intern.
“It is truly a blessing to receive a coat that you might not be able to afford,” agreed Shon Robertson, a 25-year-old leader at CCH.
CCH organizers have begun hauling winter clothing and blankets on their regular outreach at Chicago area shelters and housing programs. During 2012, Zumiez reported donating more than 180,000 items to more than 180 organizations in 21 states.
– Jim Lacy & Anne Bowhay, Media