Team works for four hours to collect 1,000 coat donations


Moxie Pest Control plans to gather 1,000 donated coats in four hours for a Salt Lake charity.

Anyone involved, whether students or Provo residents, will meet at 5 p.m. Saturday evening to go on a door-to-door race against time. The coats collected will be donated to the Salt Lake branch of Volunteers of America where they will be dispensed directly to the homeless in the Salt Lake area.

Jay Riding, a BYU student and employee of Moxie, is in charge of organizing the details of the coat drive.

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Moxie Pest Control hopes to double the results of last year's coat drive.
“When I was 15, my Eagle project was a coat drive in Portland, Oreg.,” he said.  “In a month, we collected a little less than 100 by putting out bins. Then night with my youth group we went door to door and collected over 500.”

Riding said he has organized events like this for several years.

“This last year some friends and I did it and collected around 600 coats in three hours,” Riding said. “This year we want to double the coats. We want to get over 1,000 coats.”

Lori MacKinnon, the program manager for Volunteers of America homeless outreach program in Salt lake, said this service highly valuable for the homeless in Salt Lake.

“The men and women that we serve that are chronically homeless, or even homeless for the first time, don’t have the resources to buy coats,” MacKinnon said. “It’s cold out. It’s invaluable that we have coats to give out to those in need.”

The Volunteers of America homeless outreach program offers items that satisfy basic needs such as food, sleeping bags, coats and other necessities. Individuals interested in volunteering can participate through contacting the Volunteers of America website or calling the administrative offices.

“We go where no one goes, and we do our best as the staff here to provide for men and women that are homeless,” MacKinnon said.

The group that goes out to knock doors Saturday night will meet at Riding’s house 1852 N. 1550 East in Provo. Riding said even if someone arrives late, there will be someone at the house to hand out maps.

“I think the satisfaction really comes from seeing my friends go out and do something for such a short period of four hours and see it directly benefit more than 1,000 people,” Riding said. “We affect a lot of people in a really short amount of volunteer time.”

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