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St. Lawrence University collecting winter wear for school children

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CANTON — Subzero temperatures and wind chills have made this winter unbearable for many, but especially so for students without warm coats or accessories.

That’s one reason that St. Lawrence University’s Center for Civic Engagement is organizing a coat and winter gear drive for school-age children and teens across the county.

Julie L. Johnson, events and logistics coordinator for the center, said coordinators are starting with St. Lawrence Central School District, Brasher Falls, because her husband, Christopher, is a counselor at the middle school.

“My hope is that we’ll be able to connect with all of the school districts,” she said. “I’m planning to contact other local school counselors to see what the needs are and how we can help.”

Mrs. Johnson said this winter has been cold, but the county wide need for warm outdoor clothing is continuous from year to year.

“There seems to always be children in the area that could benefit from this kind of warm clothing drive,” she said. “Obviously, the cold weather we’ve had makes it more apparent than normal.”

So far, the SLU campus has collected 10 coats and several pairs of mittens, scarves and gloves, with more donations coming in.

Coats, boots and hats, as well as other winter wear for children or adults, will be accepted.

“If we still have leftovers after reaching out to the schools, we can always donate the rest to a local thrift store or community organization,” Mrs. Johnson said.

Three boxes have been set up on campus for the donations, one in the fitness center, one in student center and one in the Brewer Bookstore.

Mrs. Johnson said anyone interested in donating should call her office at 229-5095 and schedule for student volunteers to pick up the items.

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