Students to get new winter coats, school pays it forward with a community coat drive

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File image of Edwin A. Alderman Elementary School (Photo: NHCS)

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Each student at one New Hanover County elementary school will soon get a brand new winter coat. The school is then paying it forward to the community in a warm way.

An organization called Thrivent Member Network and Operation Warmth recently raised over $29,000 to give new winter coats to elementary school students in southeastern North Carolina including Alderman Elementary.

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Thrivent is a not-for-profit membership organization that provides insurance and financial services.

“Many of our families are continuing to recover from the financial hardships caused by Hurricane Florence. We are incredibly grateful for the generosity of Thrivent Member Network and Operation Warmth. These new winter coats will do much more than keep our students warm…this event is a reminder that our sense of community is strongest when we seek opportunities to serve one another,” Principal Kate Tayloe said.

Alderman students will attend the “Wrapped in Love” event Monday in the school cafeteria where volunteers will fit each student with a brand new winter coat. Each child’s coat will be labeled with their first and last name, and they will be able to wear the new coat home on the same day as the event.

In an effort to return the kindness being shown, the school will then conduct its own Soaring Eagle Coat Drive from Tuesday-Friday.

School staff will accept donations of gently used coats to support other children in the community who may need help staying warm this winter. If possible, you are asked to wash and dry any coats before making a donation in the school lobby. Alderman is located at 2025 Independence Boulevard.