Local News

Warm Your Heart This Holiday Season by Giving the Gift of Warmth

Posted December 8, 1999 6:00 a.m. EST

— The Triangle-area is among the most prosperous areas to live in the country, but not everyone is sharing in the economic boom. And as winter closes in, many of those in need are looking for warm clothes and coats for their children.

Monifa Bryant is a single mother who has had to make some tough decisions for herself, and four-year-old daughter, Akina.

"Being out of work, running out of money that I've saved, and it's getting kind of cold," says Bryant.

The Salvation Army is their shelter from the cold, and their help in time of need. Akina is in a Head Start day care program; Monifa is continuing school and looking for part-time work.

"The Triangle is a very expensive place to live. It's an expensive place to buy a house. It's an expensive place to rent," says Tim Brooks of the Salvation Army. "A lot of the moms that we see who come for help to the shelter, or for clothing and coats for their kids, are working, and they're working hard. They're just having trouble making ends meet."

"It's like I'm between a rock and a hard place," says Bryant. "The greatest expenses, I'd say, were just clothing, shoes. It seems like every winter, she just goes through this growing spurt and I have to buy clothes all over again," says Monifa.

With money left over from last year's donations to Coats for the Children, the Salvation Army has given Bryant a cash voucher to shop for new winter clothing at Kmart.

"She's a little happier when it's new as opposed to being used. She never says anything, but you can always tell," says Bryant. "I don't thing that I could do it all without the help of the Salvation Army giving me the voucher for Kmart. So it's a big help."

WRAL's Coats for the Children program is designed to have your donations go to your local Salvation Army. But the need is so great in recently flooded parts of the state, you can help those families as well.

During Friday's telethon, there will be stretches of time when callers' donations benefit flood victims.

So far this year, the Coats for the Children campaign has collected 1,200 winter jackets. This year, the need is especially great for teens.

You can drop off new or used coats in good condition coats atAlltel and Jiffy Lube location. You can alsocharge your donation online.

A donation of $75 will buy an entire winter outfit for a child.