LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) - Instead of lining up in the parking lot, a new location allowed people to line up inside as they waited to collect winter clothing during Saturday's Coats for Kids.
"When the families are here you can see how calm and nice everyone is," Lafayette Adult Resource Academy Director Trish Maxwell said. "Everyone is being very kind to one another. I think that is an advantage of having adequate space. People feel comfortable."
For 18 years coats have lined the hallways of the Salvation Army in Lafayette. This year the venue was moved across the street to the Lafayette Adult Resource Academy or LARA.
Salvation Army Major Jim Irvine said this was a long time coming.
"Our building was nice, but it was too small for this event," Irvine said. "For the last three years we've been trying to find a location that could house us comfortably. With LARA being right across the street it's an ideal match-up."
More than 1,000 coats, 1,445 to be exact, plus hundreds of gently used winter clothing items were put into LARA's gym. Maxwell said having Coats for Kids at LARA can give visitors more resources than winter clothing.
"I am able to give information about the services LARA offers to each of these families," Maxwell said. "Many of the families I've been talking to in the line are employed, many employed part time, many of them I would describe as under-employed. Some have finished their high school credentials, some have not. In the 21st century you need more than high school credentials to get the kind of employment that can sustain a family. We offer that at LARA."
Irvine said the leftover clothes will be at the Salvation Army this week for anyone to pick up. You can continue to donate winter clothes throughout the season.
"We would love people throughout the winter to bring us their coats, their hats, their mits because the need never ends," Irvine said.
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