Skidegate kids spread the warmth

  • Nov. 28, 2014 2:00 p.m.

A group of Skidegate children are spreading warmth throughout islands communities, collecting and distributing warm clothing as part of their Coats 4 Kids initiative.”It’s a powerful thing, helping people. It makes them feel good seeing someone happy when you’re coming with a coat for their child,” said Natasha Collinson, whose 10-year-old daughter Zoey had the idea to collect coats. “I tell the girls, it has a domino effect, touching so many people.Sk’aadga Naay Elementary students Zoey, Tymeko, and Lakye Collinson, Abby Grinder and Stacey Edinger are accepting donations of coats, boots, mittens, hats, and pyjamas, carrying on a Christmas tradition for its sixth year.”People might have coats they’ve outgrown, that are hanging there and they haven’t had time to give them to the thrift store yet, we’ll come get them from them,” said Ms. Collinson.Last year, she said the community was incredibly generous and the kids collected 67 coats, some brand new. This year looks as though there’ll be even more, as the group is using Facebook buy and sell pages to communicate their mission, generating involvement from all over Haida Gwaii.”It’s almost bigger to do it on Facebook. Right away I had so many inboxes,” Ms. Collinson said, “People have even offered to mend coats for free.”Ms. Collinson has been driving the children to pick up coats on the south end of islands and can arrange for coats to be transported to and from the north end as well. “We’ll be continuing this for the next month and even into the holidays,” she said, “Kids lose coats, they outgrow them and they’re expensive. Some people can’t afford to buy new ones.”If people need warm clothing or have items they’re willing to donate, they can contact Ms. Collinson and the girls through her Facebook posts or at 637-1161.Skidegate residents should get ready for a visit from the children within the first two weeks of December, when the girls will spend a Saturday night Christmas caroling, handing out homemade cookies, and collecting food donations for the food bank.

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