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Spreading the Warmth: SHIM introducing expanded winter coat program

Dear friend,

Each year, our generous community donates coats and winter apparel to keep our families warm during the cold winter months. With the growing number of people we serve, last year we were unable to meet the needs of all of our families. Kids grow quickly, and we did not have the right sizes to meet every child’s need last winter. This year, we have 600 kids in our care.

Every child and adult deserves a warm winter coat. In order to make this happen, we’ve been working hard to reshape the winter coat program to ensure the people we serve–especially the children–receive a warm coat in the correct size.

This is why we are excited to announce an innovative, new pilot partnership with Goodwill of Southwestern Pennsylvania, the largest provider of donated goods in the region. Through this partnership, SHIM families will have the opportunity to shop for and select the winter apparel they need most.

In past years, SHIM could only distribute coats – in a limited inventory of sizes – during a very short window of time, which forced the closure of the Community Closet. Now, SHIM families can shop at a time and location that is most convenient for them, while choosing from a much larger selection of coats and winter apparel. At the same time, the Community Closet can operate during its regular hours providing much-needed clothing support for our families.

Here’s how the pilot program works:

  • Generous neighbors donate coats and winter apparel to SHIM.
  • SHIM collects the winter apparel and packs it up for Goodwill.
  • Goodwill provides credit to SHIM based on their donations, which turns into Goodwill gift cards for SHIM families.
  • The more coat donations SHIM receives, the more credit goes to our families!
  • Each family registered for the food pantry will receive a gift card to shop at any Goodwill in the area, allowing them to purchase the coats, hats, boots and/or gloves of their choice.
  • We are collecting winter coats, boots and accessories now. By providing your gently used winter coats to SHIM, you are ensuring that every person, especially every one of the 600 kids we serve, has a warm coat that fits this year. Your donations can be dropped off at SHIM Center in Bethel Park Monday – Wednesday from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. and Thursday and Friday by appointment.

As always, thank you for helping to care for our neighbors.

Sincerely,
Jim Guffey


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