Al, Joan, Mike and Brian loading the donated coats

May 8, 2013 - Gateway Rotarians are asked to "clean out their closets" each fall to provide warm clothing for the Clothing Bank at Sacred Heart Church.  This bank provides clothing to all who are in need. Last year, the Clothing Bank ran out of warm clothing for children, and asked us if we could help - and Gateway Rotarians stepped up to the plate; however, even on sale and in a mid-priced clothing store, young people's coats cost upwards of $60.00 each!


This summer, members were asked to attend their neighborhood garage sales to see if they could find good coats at reasonable prices.  Even though many of our members said they were "garage-sale challenged" Al Eckroth accepted the challenge, and canvassed his neighborhood last weekend during their community garage sale looking for coats.  He came up with nearly 40! Combined with the nearly 40 that Joan Keller found at a neighborhood garage sale the week before, there were almost 80 coats presented to Dorothy Payne of Sacred Heart Church.  Dorothy said she would store many of them, and put them out at the Clothing Bank as needed.  She and fellow volunteer Jim picked the coats up during our weekly meeting on May 8. 

Joan and Al said they each spent under $100, and averaged under $3.00 per coat.  They spent only a few hours on one day.  Al said he found it fun to re-connect with people in his neighborhood.  Both Al and Joan said that people were incredibly generous.  Once they heard how the coats would be used, they charged less, and added more coats - some even going into their homes to pull coats out of closets! And some added warm blankets, as well.

All-in-all, it was time well spent!


80 coats from local garage sales ready for pickup for the Clothing Bank at Sacred Heart Church