The fall is here, which means cooler weather is in the forecast. With the ongoing pandemic, many will be unable to provide their families with one of the most basic winter essentials – coats. Over 40 businesses around the Charlotte region have now joined together in the mission to collect coats for those in need during the 10th annual Charlotte Coat Drive. CES is excited to work with long-time customer Charlotte Mechanical to help make a positive impact in the community.
“I heard about it on the radio,” said City Electric Supply’s Gary Tubbs. “Hearing kids’ voices on there – it pulls at your heart strings. When you hear kids talking on the radio about their families not being able to afford coats. That’s more of what spoke to me. I knew Charlotte Mechanical since they are one of our customers, so I reached out to them.”
The mission kicked off in the month of September and will continue through Nov. 13. Last year, the drive collected around 5,100 coats. They’ve bumped the number up this year to 6,000. One hundred percent of the proceeds and coats raised will go to the Salvation Army of Greater Charlotte.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has had widespread impacts on our community, and lower-income families are feeling its effects the most,” said Major Todd Mason, Area Commander for the Salvation Army of Greater Charlotte. “The need in Charlotte is always great, but this year, we expect it to be even greater. No woman or child in our community should have to bear a winter without a coat.”
COVID-19 has affected much of the way the drive is run this year. The number of drop-off locations has increased, and many new barrel partners have decided to do their own internal drives as they’re not allowing people in their offices during the pandemic.
Charlotte Mechanical will be hosting a Zip-Up Day event to give everyone in the community the opportunity to participate. It will be on Friday, Nov.13, from 7 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Dilworth Bar and Grill’s parking lot at 911 E Morehead St., Charlotte, NC 28204. The event includes free food, music, mascots, giveaways, and some zippy surprises. A contact-free drive-thru will also be available.
Charlotte Mechanical’s Charlotte Coat Drive started 10 years ago by owners Steve and Nancy McLaughlin and their friends. What first started as a small coat donation — with around 250 coats and 10-barrel partners — is today the company’s biggest community event, with 45-barrel partners. All collected coats are donated to The Salvation Army of Greater Charlotte and distributed via their men’s, women’s, and youth programs. Charlotte Mechanical funds everything with zero cost to The Salvation Army or any location.
You can find out more information and a map of all the drop-off locations around Charlotte at CoatDriveCharlotte.com