Getting a winter coat to every Coloradan who needs one

Coats for Colorado drive takes place through Nov. 30

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Dependable Cleaners is again hosting its annual Coats for Colorado campaign to get coats to those who are in need.

“The need is great. We’ve got the ability to provide, and so we will,” said Kasina Swartz, the Coats for Colorado coordinator and store manager for the Dependable Cleaners at 1701 South Broadway. “It’s carrying on someone else’s legacy of kindness.”

Coats for Colorado got its start by the late Warren Toltz in the early 1980s. Since then, it has become an annual success, serving nearly 150 local nonprofits, schools and not-for-profit organizations. Last year, about 30,000 coats were collected and distributed to Coloradans in need.

New and gently-used coats may be dropped off at any Dependable Cleaners metro-wide through Nov. 30. Special precautions are being taken this year because of COVID-19, so all coats should be dropped off in a bag to allow time for quarantine. Additionally, Dependable Cleaners’ cleaning process ensures sanitation of each donated coat.

Dependable Cleaners does not have staff to make repairs, so coats must be in condition. For example, there should be no rips or holes and the zippers should work. Coats are cleaned at the location they are dropped off at, then they are delivered to Swartz’s store location for sorting, such as being divided into children’s or adult sizes.

This year, there is a specific need for children’s coats — the loss of jobs because of the pandemic may make it especially difficult for parents who are out-of-work to get their children a winter coat, said Janay Ingram, district manager for Dependable Cleaners.

“The great thing about this year’s drive is that people who are donating coats are truly doing it for the betterment of their community,” Ingram said. “We’ll make sure that every kid, every person in the state of Colorado who needs a winter coat, gets one.”

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