Last Thursday morning at Houston firefighters provided nearly 600 new winter coats to children attending a local elementary school in association with the Firefighters Coats for Kids Foundation.
Jeff Caynon, president of the Houston Professional Fire Fighters Association, said, “Nearly 2 million children in Texas are living in poverty. This is an emergency without the 911 call. With these gifts, Houston firefighters will help make a difference in the lives of children attending Gallegos Elementary with a most basic necessity.
HPFFA Director Alvin White said, “This gift is more than a coat. Beyond warmth, we believe a new coat will bring pride to these children and relief for struggling families, just in time for the holidays.”
Firefighters Coats for Kids Foundation is a division of Operation Warm, the largest non-profit distributer of new coats in the U.S. The new program has recently earned the support of the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) who encourage their membership of more than 300,000 to participate.
Carey Palmquist, Executive Director of Operation Warm, said, “This is a program that strengthens communities and the overall well-being of children. A new coat boosts a child’s self-esteem, and allows families to stretch limited financial resources to other basic necessities, such as food and shelter.”
About Firefighters Coats for Kids Foundation
Firefighters Coats for Kids is a division of nonprofit Operation Warm, a 501(c)3 founded in 1998. Operation Warm’s mission is to warm the hearts, minds and bodies of children in poverty through the gift of warmth – a brand new winter coat. Community service is at the core of a firefighter’s mission. Through Firefighters Coats for Kids, they inspire hope and empower the communities they serve, by providing NEW winter coats to those children most in need. By 2013, Firefighters Coats for Kids plans to distribute American-made coats, bringing back jobs to North America and further battling the cycle of poverty. For more information visit: www.firefighterscoatsforkids.org