Anyone else like to get a new coat and boots each year? I personally do. But I always donate my coat from the previous year. I tend to wear the same things over and over, so I know I really won’t wear the old coat and it will sit in my closet, going to waste. Our girls both grew out of their coats I had bought them last year, still in great condition. So as I was shopping for new coats and boots and I thought of ways of how could I donate our old coat and boots. I wish I knew a local need or someone to give them to, then I thought of my friend Sonya and how she does such a wonderful coat drive every year.
First I wanted to share WHY I decided to get new boots and coat. Nothing is wrong with buying shoes or a coat because you want to. But my old Sorel boots I found myself NEVER wearing, they were taking up valuable space in my tiny closet. They were WAY to clunky. I have had them for close to five or six years and wore them a handful of times. They were too heavy. So when I found THESE Sorel Explorer Carnival Boots from Urban Outfitters, I knew they could replace the boots I never wore and someone else would possibly fit my other pair better.
We came up with a coat drive that we could do in front of our house! Similar to what my friend Sonya, does every year! And I decided to include new or like new boots.
First we cleaned up the yard a little. We have a Free Little Library- so I thought placing our coat drive by it would be a good idea! I you don’t have a Free Little Library, do what my friend Sonya does and put it by your front door! Keep reading for more on running your own coat drive….
We decided to get a metal garbage can with a tight lid. And we are going to place it outside maybe every Saturday and post it to our local FB community page. Or do what Sonya does, and bring the new coat additions inside each night. You can always donate to the local Goodwill or Salvation Army, but if you want to get your kids a bit more involved this year-
Start Your Own Coat Drive
To really do some good this winter, don’t just donate to a coat drive—start one yourself. This is what my friend in Utah does who puts on a coat drive every winter. She spreads the word on social media and local neighborhood pages to leave their donations on their porch then, she and her kids spend time together gathering coats from homes in the community.
It kind of started when I was trying to get my kids motivated into helping others and to make them be more grateful for the things that they had. We start collecting coats when it starts cooling down each year and then we take them down to the Road Home in Salt Lake (a local homeless shelter). We make it a family affair, we usually do a monetary donation while we are down there and we donate all the coats that we collected. It’s really cool and good for my kids to see who and how they are helping. I keep a basket on my front porch for people to put the coats in, every night we empty the basket in the house, then we bag them up and take them down. Last time we did it, we filled two cars full of coats to donate!!
You can register a drive with national organizations like One Warm Coat in order to receive free tools and resources to help you plan and promote your drive. All you need to do to start is set dates, pick an organization to donate the coats to, figure out where your drop-off locations will be, and start spreading the word. To take matters into your own hands, start with these tips for launching your own coat drive.
So don’t feel bad about buying new shoes or coats. Just make sure that your items don’t sit in your closet collecting dust! Lately I have been a big Urban Outfitters lover, I am sure you have noticed. Very unique clothes and home decor. Kevin gave me THIS coat for our anniversary and I have loved it, I wear it often. I really didn’t need THIS plaid coat, but I had ordered it to try with a few other coats and it stayed! So I decided to donate a similar, more “church” like coat! One in and one out. THIS coat is perfect for our really cold adventures, like the Maceys Day Thanksgiving Parade.
Loved that Ella got involved and could understand the need that so many have. She has plenty of jackets and coats that she has outgrown or that she has been given and don’t wear. Very happy that we now have a place to spread the love! (Find Ella’s cute puffer vest HERE).
Print out your own coat drive sign HERE
Thank you Sonya for inspiring all of us! Picture from my friend Sonya’s Coat Drive-
Plenty of local charities, shelters, schools and businesses will hold coat drives as well. It is a great way to become active in your community, learn more about the needs in your area and meet like-minded people!