Donate Coats to Local School Children
January 10, 2014
CAPTION: Chillicothe firefighters donated more than 30 coats to local school
children Friday. Chillicothe School guidance counselor Ellen Tsikoyak (holding coat) picked up the coats from the fire station to
deliver to children in the Chillicothe R-2 School District.
C-T Photo / Calli Price
On Friday, Jan. 10, the Chillicothe Fire Fighters Local 2460 provided
brand-new winter coats to over 30 school children in partnership with
Operation Warm, a national non-profit organization dedicated to warming
the hearts, minds and bodies of children in need. This is the first year
Chillicothe firefighters have reached out with warmth to the smallest
citizens they protect. They plan to make this outreach annual, creating a
lasting impact in the community they serve. Firefighters across the country are stepping up to collaborate with Operation Warm creating
a new local program: Firefighters Coats for Kids, a movement led by professional
firefighters to combat the effects of childhood poverty.
"In the extended Kansas City metro area, which includes Chillicothe,
poverty rates among children are well above 30 percent," said Donnie
Rogers, president of Chillicothe Fire Fighters Local 2460. "On the job,
firefighters witness the sad truth behind those numbers and we are committed to serving these kids beyond the 911
The Chillicothe firefighters worked closely with Chillicothe School
guidance counselor Ellen Tsikoyak and others to identify children in
desperate need of coats. They will be on-site to surprise the children
with the new coats. The joy and sense of self-value that new coat may
bring to a child in need is a core part of both Operation Warm and the
firefighters' joint mission. Firefighters will personally fit each child
with their new coat, helping them to select their favorite color and to
write their name in the interior tag, which reads, "Made Especially For
The coats, made specifically for this nation-wide program, are mostly
American-made. "This is so much more than a coat," Rogers said.
"Beyond warmth and dignity for children, American coat production targets a root cause of
poverty for so many families."
In year one of Operation
Warm's American manufacturing, firefighters will provide 30,000 children with
American-made winter coats, and this program supported over 200 jobs for Americans.
The new coat celebration is the culmination of a community-based fundraising campaign led by the Missouri State Council of Firefighters to
warm the hearts of local children. The Missouri State Council of Firefighters fundraise year-round to support this
endeavor among the many other charities they elect to support.