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SRU AmeriCorps coat drive helps
local children avoid winter cold

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - In an effort to aid local children, Slippery Rock University's AmeriCorps members, the SRU Women's Center and One Warm Coat are sponsoring a winter coat drive through national Make a Difference Day, Oct. 23.

The project is accepting new or gently worn, clean coats. Coats may be dropped off at the Center for Student Involvement and Leadership in the University Union.

Hats, socks, gloves and scarves are also needed.

The One Warm Coat program started in 1992 as a Thanksgiving weekend coat drive in San Francisco. Since then, more than 1 million coats have been donated in thousands of local communities across the U.S.

"Each coat drive has the same intent - to collect coats that will be given to those in need," said Laurel Dagnon, program director for AmeriCorps. "This year the need is greater than ever. Right now, 36 million American are living in poverty and the number continues to grow. More than 20 percent of Butler County residents fall below the poverty level, and the fastest growing population of homeless people continues to be single women with children. Nearly one in five children live in poverty, it only gets worse in the winters months."

Make A Difference Day is the largest national day of helping others and is sponsored annually by USA WEEKEND Magazine and its 700 carrier newspapers.

In addition to concluding the coat drive, SRU AmeriCorps has additional community service projects scheduled for the day, including a community clean up and CPR classes offered in conjunction with the American Red Cross.

For additional information contact Dagnon at 724.738.2030.