Changes Announced for This Year's Coats for Kids Campaign

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A change for this year's Coats for Kids campaign in Windsor-Essex.

The Unemployed Help Centre has announced coats will not be collected and distributed due to the the COVID-19 pandemic.

Instead, the Unemployed Help Centre has created a voucher system for coats that can be used at participating local retailers.

CEO June Muir says the agency is working closely with the Greater Essex County District School Board and the Windsor Essex Catholic District School Board to see how many children need winter coats this year.

She admits a lot of money needs to be raised because in previous years roughly 5000 coats were handed out but says the Unemployed Help Centre will make sure each child receives a coat if they need one.

"We know that there's going to be a big demand this year," says Muir.  "I've already spoken to some teachers who have identified many students that need coats.  We are going through a pandemic, we still have many people not working."  

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Members of the community look for coats at the 'Coats For Kids' event, Saturday November 12, 2016 (Photo by John Hutton)

She says if it was a regular year, distribution would have started this Saturday.

"We knew we weren't able to do that and we knew we could not have distribution sites open like we have had in the past," says Muir.  "We have a very successful campaign each and every year.  Our community is extremely generous."

 A campaign kick-off was held Thursday morning out front of the Unemployed Help Centre on Cantelon Drive.

During the kick-off, Unifor Local 444 Retirees Council and the Windsor Essex Chatham Kent Unifor Retired Workers Area Council donated $4,500 towards this year's campaign.

The councils are now challenging community members to donate to this year's campaign.

Donations can be made through the Unemployed Help Centre's website.