Each winter, City Year Detroit corps members are confronted with the harsh reality of a struggling city; many students come to school inadequately dressed for the cruel Michigan winter. It is common for students of all ages to come with only layers of sweaters and tennis shoes to keep them warm. Many times, it takes an adult manually warming a student’s hands and feet for the child to become able to sit comfortably through class.
In 2010, City Year corps members decided to take this matter into their own hands and began a winter clothing drive to outfit students in their school. In 2010, the City Year team at Palmer Park Preparatory Academy collected over 150 jackets, 250 hats, gloves and mittens that were immediately distributed to students in need. Almost every child in need of a jacket, hat, gloves or mittens was able to walk away from school that day, fully equipped for whatever Mother Nature blew their way.
Based on the success of our volunteer drive at Palmer Park Preparatory Academy, this fall, City Year corps members need to try to reach students in every school that has a City Year Detroit team in it. For 2011, this means 9 schools throughout Detroit, River Rouge, Harper Woods and Taylor.
This is where you come in! I have attached a flyer that can be posted at your favorite business, restaurant, church, school, gym, etc or can be forwarded to family and friends. It has an open line to write where the clothing will be collected (and dates if you want too!) I have also attached a letter than can be sent to any funder/business interested in donating any materials (make sure to fill in the line with the name of the person/organization). The letter contains information about City Year Detroit and the Winter Clothing Drive. Feel free to get creative about how to get coats donated if you have the time… Having a Holiday Party? Require guests to bring a jacket! Have a favorite restaurant? Ask them if they would be willing to provide a discount for any customer that brings in jacket for a day! Or you can simply donate any gently used winter clothing that you have laying around the house.
Please call me with ANY questions! (734) 657-6767 or (313) 443-4925. We all have high hopes for the city of Detroit, but we need to start with small steps. Having a warm jacket, gloves, and a hat is a great place to begin.