Children's coat drive might fall short in Baltimore County

Donors are down and requests are up

October 26, 2011|By Mary Gail Hare, The Baltimore Sun

With a little more than a week remaining in Baltimore County's Department of Social Services' annual Coats-4-Kids campaign, organizers are looking an estimated $6,800 shortfall in donations and ever increasing requests for a new winter jacket.

Nearly 300 more families asked for a new coat this year than in 2010, when the staff filled 982 referrals from social workers.

"Donations are down and referrals are up," said Deborah S. Ward, county director of volunteer services. "We have our volunteer shoppers out looking for coat bargains, but we may have to call them back unless we get more donations."

Those shoppers have already delivered about 700 of the requested coats, one found 300 herself. Ward asked volunteers to purchase coats with a price tag of $20 or less. Her staff delivers them to shelters and schools for distribution or families can collect them at the Drumcastle Center on York Road.

"The hardest to find and the most expensive are the large and extra large sizes," she said. "That's what we are dealing with now."

That is in addition to about 500 more coats to purchase before the drive ends Nov. 4.

Willing donors can call 410-853-3024 and Ward's staff will give them a size that is most needed and information on where to deliver the items.

mary.gail.hare@baltsun.com

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