A Loving Tribute to Their Mom

2014 Heart shaped pieA few years ago, Greg C. founded a coat drive to gather warm clothes for Bakersfield’s needy residents. He shares that he got the idea from his Mom, Juanita, a local baker who’d always put out a table of slightly-worn clothing that she’d collected from family members. Greg had thought that the items were for sale. When his Mom passed away, he learned that Juanita had been giving the clothing away. Each year, Greg and his siblings organize a multi-location One Warm Coat drive in her memory. This week, we honor Greg C., his family and their work to keep their Mom’s legacy alive in the community. Our hearts are warmed by this touching tribute and we know yours will be, too.

Taking Inspiration from the Three “Rs” of Earth Day

Recycle w OWCEarth Day (Tuesday, April 22nd) is one of our favorite days! Founded 44 years ago by Sen. Gaylord Nelson (WI) as an environmental “teach-in” for Americans of all ages, the first Earth Day provided the clever motto “Reduce-Reuse-Recycle” to remind us of how easy it is to make a difference.

The first teach-in brought together homemakers, educators, church and religious organizations, professional groups and conservation groups across the U.S. Each lent their strength to the important work of cleaning up their communities. (Sounds very familiar…) Today, Earth Day is a worldwide movement in over 125 countries!

Here’s why the annual celebration is a favorite for the One Warm Coat team: Our friends can reduce material in landfills by donating their extra warm coats. We know that someone in need will gratefully reuse them! When each of us recycles our warmth in this way, we improve our environment in important ways all across the land. We invite you to access our Coat Drive Locator map or locate a One Warm Coat community service Agency and recycle your extra warm coat today!

Celebrating Success!

Amy-Dwyer-at-Senegal-ConferenceIt’s time to celebrate your success! Whether a coat drive collects one coat or 100, we “measure” success by the warmth shared in physical terms (number of coats) and in community relationships. Today, we are happy to tell you about Kathy B. from Chester County (PA) and her coat drive success.

Three years ago, Kathy contacted One Warm Coat for assistance with organizing a coat drive in memory of her late sister-in-law, Amy Dwyer. This year, Kathy and her team collected over 1,000 coats—and she received personal recognition from her County’s Women’s Commission! Congratulations, Kathy and team! And thank you for making One Warm Coat part of your drive to bring the warmth of good coats and good community relationships to Chester County. (Organizers: Why not share your success through our website today? http://onewarmcoat.org/organize-a-drive/share-your-success/)

Happiness = Your Thinking + What You Do!

Sherri at Happines DayHappiness is a goal that we all share. Experience and research show us that the “secret” to achieving it is simple: do something. Here’s another “secret”: doing something for someone else makes both of us happy! The website mylivehappy.com says, ”What you do matters. True joy comes from spreading happiness to those around you.” In San Francisco last week, our National Founder and Board Chair, Sherri Wood, attended the annual International Day of Happiness celebration, and shared this photo taken while she added her commitment to the thousands made that day! Today, we at One Warm Coat thank every coat drive Organizer, Agency, and Sponsor who joined us this season to do something to improve the lives of others. Your friendship and your partnership in this important work make us very happy!

Celebrating Women Then and Now

nwhpbanner2This month recognizes the significant work American women have done—and continue to do–on behalf of people in need. We invite you to join us in honoring their contributions to communities here and beyond our borders. Here are some who come to mind today.
* Jane Addams (1860-1935), founder of one of the original settlement houses for disadvantaged citizens.
* Dr. Justina Ford (1871-1952), a physician who often provided services to low-income and indigent people.
* Melinda Gates (current), whose work with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation advances health care and reduces extreme poverty.
* And our own National Founder, Sherri Lewis Wood (current), whose compassion and skill built One Warm Coat from a one-city coat drive into a nationally-known organization that warms the lives of millions each winter.

If you have a woman whose community work you wish to honor this month, we invite you to visit our Facebook page and leave us a post. We would enjoy learning about her!

A Salute to Girl Power! (Girl Scouts, that is!)

Daisies and Junior Girls Scouts 2010This week, we join our friends, Girl Scouts of the USA, in celebrating Girl Scout Week. Each year, Girl Scout, Brownie and Daisy troops across the country hold and help with coat drives that bring life-giving warmth to people in need. For over 100 years, Girl Scouts of the USA has helped young girls to develop courage, confidence and character. This week, we salute their spirit of service. We are thankful for their contributions and very proud that they are our friends!

There’s Still Time – and There’s Always a Need

2012 Sample E CardIt’s nearly Spring, when the wind blows warmer, the days grow longer and the jackets get lighter. Right? Well, not at the moment. Weather conditions like the “polar vortex” are still with us—as is the need for warm coats. Warming centers from Maine to California have remained opened to handle the unusual number of “Code Blue” nights. The good news? There’s still time to hold a coat drive! Spring will arrive eventually. In the meantime, we’ve got plenty of Promo Packs ready to ship, to help you and your teams hold a coat drive and spread life-giving warmth to your neighbors in need. Why not register yours here today?

Fairy TaleThis week’s “holidays” include Tell a Fairy Tale Day! We love fairy tales, because although they need not start with “Once upon a time,” they almost always end with “…and they lived happily ever after.” Here’s our tale:

Once upon a time, during a winter that was very cold, a small group of friends noticed that some of their neighbors had no coats to keep them warm. This worried the friends a great deal. Then, one of them had an idea. They would gather all their extra coats and give them to their neighbors in need! The idea grew and grew. Soon, almost everyone who could help did so—across the whole country! In the end, everyone who needed a warm coat could get one, free of charge! The communities became much warmer places to live, and they all lived happily ever after. (To make this fairy tale a reality, please visit One Warm Coat today. Thank you!)

Winter Holiday Fun – Brought to You by Warm Coats Everywhere

Snow Angel

SnowmenFor many, President’s Day (today) is a holiday from work and school. As our friends from north to south dig out from recent snowstorms, we thought we’d share some ideas of what to do with all that time off—and all that snow.

Note: This fun was made possible by warm coats everywhere! Why not donate your extra warm coat today and share the fun in your community?

The Heart of the Matter

Framed Valentine logoIt’s 7 degrees in Milwaukee today; in Pittsburgh, tonight’s low will be 2 degrees. Charleston, WV is expecting nighttime temperatures in the teens, and the frigid forecast goes on and on. If you have heard the phrase “the heart of the matter,” you know that it means to focus on the most important part of something. For people living through this winter with little, the need for a warm coat is the heart of the matter. Whether you can donate your extra warm coat or can support a way to make warm coats available to others, we hope you’ll take action today. Your support will get to the heart of the matter, to warm the life of someone in need.