by Jacob Noseworthy
Discover Border Country Realty is now in its 19th year of the Coats for Kids program that collects new or slightly used winter coats for those in need during the winter months.
Sharon Marshall, the owner of Discover Border Country Realty and the organizer of Coats for Kids in Grand Forks, spoke about the initiative and her involvement, saying, “My involvement began because I thought it was a great community idea to collect coats and give them away at Christmas time. The reason for the project is that everyone should have a warm coat in the winter, so all the coats and winter clothing that we collect are given away absolutely free of charge.”
The program has been very successful during its first 18 years in Grand Forks, and the 19th year looks to be one of the most successful yet, as Marshall and her staff collected almost two rooms full of winter clothing.
Despite the name, Coats for Kids collects all types of winter clothing including mittens, boots and scarves, and provides winter clothing to children and needy adults.
The coats and other winter items were delivered to the Grand Forks Christian Centre on Monday, Dec. 7, but Marshall discussed how they collect coats all year round, and not just at Christmas time, stating, “It works well with our business as real estate people because when people move out of town, they’ll often have coats they no longer need, that they bring to us.”
Additionally, Marshall acknowledged the other community organizations that contribute to the program. “The ladies at the Hospital Auxiliary Thrift Shop have been fantastic. They donate a lot of winter coats to us and we greatly appreciate their help and work. The Christian Centre has also been great; we’re very grateful that we’ve been able to work with them all these years.”
Coats and other winter items can be picked up from the Christian Centre, at 7525 Fourth Street, located behind Overwaitea Foods, on Tuesday and Wednesday, Dec. 8 and 9, from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.