Coats for Kids program in great need of donations

A Coats for Kids program in Sylvan Lake has been providing community members with winter outerwear for the past 10 years

The Coats for Kids program in Sylvan Lake is in great need of donations

A Coats for Kids program in Sylvan Lake has been providing community members with winter outerwear for the past 10 years, but is now experiencing a great need for more donations — especially for youths and teenagers, according to program co-ordinator Ingrid Soanes.

Soanes keeps records of patrons the program has provided for and which items have been taken. She said the program has already provided well over 200 pieces of winter outerwear to people.

Winter gear needed includes coats, snow pants, gloves, hats, scarves, boots and almost anything else winter-related. Soanes said a lack of donations means the program might not be able to offer what some people need.

“There’s a desperate need for (donations),” she said. “There are a lot of families in need.”

Soanes suspects another 150 to 200 pieces will be needed in the near future, as cold weather understandably increases demand.

The program provides winter essentials not just for children; it also collects and distributes items to teenagers and adults.

The program accepts both new items and used items in good condition at the Sylvan Lake Community Partners building between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Patrons do not have to provide proof of household income, as the program’s aim is to help the entire community of Sylvan Lake and surrounding area.

Norman Eirikson of Eckville has been using the program since last year and finds it to be helpful.

“This service is great,” he said. “I really appreciate the help. It’s been a great experience.”