Each year, the need for warm coats among children in our community grows greater; and each year, Adena Health System caregivers step up to meet that need. This year, more than 1,000 local children were presented as being in need of a winter coat to Adena’s annual Coats for Kids drive. Thanks to the generosity of Adena caregivers every child on the list received a brand-new coat to keep them warm this winter, including one very appreciative Tiffin Elementary 5th grade student.
“The student came into my office and thanked me about half a dozen times for the coat,” said Heather Schaeffer, the school’s secretary. “He asked me where it came from and I explained to him that a very nice person from Adena bought it for him. He then hugged me and asked that I pass the hug on and thank the person who bought it.”
Wrapping up its 10th year, Adena’s Coats for Kids program has become well-known throughout the region. This year, coats were purchased for elementary children at 21 schools in Highland, Jackson, Pickaway, Pike, Ross and Vinton counties. Students recieving coats are identified by teachers, principals, bus drivers and others who may know of a family’s financial situation, or might notice a child not having proper clothing to handle the cold.
“I do not know what we would do without the generosity of Adena,” said Schaeffer. “So many students are impacted by this cause. We see a lot of students in coats from prior years that are now too small, coats that aren’t warm enough, or there are some who simply do not have a coat at all. Not only does this help the child, this helps the entire family. The money saved on a new coat could be used for a family meal or the child’s Christmas.”
“Being my first year organizing this program, it has opened my eyes to the needs of our children in our local and surrounding areas,” said Stephanie Draise, Adena Revenue Cycle Team Lead. “Our caregivers have the most compassionate and loving hearts I have ever seen, and are always willing to go above and beyond-not just for their patients,-but for their communities as well.”
Since the Health System began collecting coats in 2007, Adena caregivers have provided nearly 11,000 coats to children through the program. Coats are collected, sorted and delivered by caregivers, volunteers and their families.