United Way has organized the annual Coats for Kids drive for over 20 years. This important program helps families in need access warm weather attire for their children. 

Living in an area that experiences all four seasons can be nice but as temperatures take a dive and winter approaches, many people in the community may not be able to afford appropriate gear for cold temperatures. 

Summer Hammond, the Perham and Wadena area coordinator at United Way, described the significance of this program. “Coats for Kids is important because our youth should not be cold, no one should go cold,” she explained. “Our children need to stay children as long as they can and not take on this burden. Our children need to be able to get outside for fresh air, exercise and play with their friends.”

More than 1,000 coats, hats, mittens and snow pants were given to families throughout Otter Tail and Wadena counties last year. Coats for Kids is now accepting donations for this season and folks are encouraged to donate their winter gear, new or used and in good condition. Donations can be dropped off at any of the following locations: United Way office in Fergus Falls, Perham Area Community Center (PACC), Perham, Bremer Bank, Perham, KLN/Tuffy’s/ Kenny’s Candy, Perham, Shearers, Perham, Calvary, Lutheran Church, Perham, Perham Health & Perham Living, Perham, United Community Bank, Perham, Farmers & Merchant State Bank, New York Mills, St. Peters Lutheran Church, New York Mills, Immanuel Lutheran Church, Wadena, St. Ann’s Catholic Church, Wadena, Maslowski Wellness Center, Wadena.

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