By Philippe Djegal - email
TYLER, TX (KLTV) - Winter is around the corner, and as the cooler weather approaches, some children will be left out in the cold, because they can't afford warm clothing. Today, after months of collecting jackets for their program Coats for Kids, PATH ensured that hundreds of less fortunate kids will be warm for the winter.
The line wrapped around the discovery science place building in Tyler for about a block.
"They're helping out with coats and kinda in need of coats," said Josephine Flores. "So, we're here for coats."
"It's hard to get coats during the winter," said Yecenia Sosa, a 12-year old. "It's very cold and you can't really go out that."
Josephine Flores is a mother of three. She lives in Tyler now. She moved here from Detriot two months ago.
"If I didn't have the coats, [I would] probably have to struggle and make ends meet to get them coats," said Flores. "But, with this, it's a really good help."
The kids were so excited to receive their coats that they could barely contain themselves.
"Winter time is almost here and I [will] have a coat to be warm when I go see my grandma," said David Woods, an 11-year old.
If you think it's crazy outside, then check out what's going on in inside. The volunteers know that some people have waited in line since 4:30am. So, they're working as hard as they possibly can to get the kids their coats.
"Two weeks ago we had 47 coats," said Becky Duncan.
But, thanks to a rapid increase in donations in the past 10 days, community outreach coordinator Becky Duncan says PATH collected more than 1,000 coats for distribution this weekend.
"I'm blown away by the generosity of the people of East Texas," said Duncan. "When asked, they know exactly what you need."
"I need one too, because I got very thin jackets," said Yecenia Sosa.
"Parents understand this - how generous this community is and the value of what they're receiving," said Duncan. "I'd call it unbelievable generosity."
Tomorrow is the last day PATH will be distributing free coats. They'll be at the Discovery Science Building in downtown Tyler from 1pm to 5pm. Children must be accompanied with an adult. Both the adult and child must have a legal I.D. proving residency in Smith County.