Clothing drive seeks to help "Share the Warmth"

Winter is approaching. With the frigid temperatures that accompany the season, many homeless people are left outside in the cold with little or no means for warmth.

Students at the A.C.E Language Institute sought to help the less fortunate with their first ever clothing drive. This clothing drive was titled, "Drive for ROOTS: Share the Warmth."

The drive brought in the equivalent of about 20 grocery bags filled with warm clothes and blankets, said Tim Healy, an A.C.E. instructional coordinator for ESL students. The drive also received $137, which will purchase more items of necessity for the homeless, Healy said.

All donations went to the Rising Out of the Shadows shelter in the University District. Founded in 1999, ROOTS helps and provides shelter for homeless young adults and teens from the ages of 18 to 25.

The clothing drive was coordinated by upper level English students at the A.C.E. Language Institute. Located near the SPU Bookstore on Nickerson Street, the A.C.E. Language Institute at SPU offers English language and cultural skills to students from various international locations, said sophomore Ruby O’Connor, A.C.E Language Institute office assistant.

The drive took place on Nov. 23 and 24 from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Collection bins were set up in the Student Union Building and in Weter Lounge. The students who organized the drive asked for donations of any blankets or warm clothes, such as socks, coats or thermals.

There was also a raffle for those who donated. This raffle took place after the clothing drive was finished on Nov. 24 at 4:30 pm. The prize: a Visa gift card with $35 worth of spending money.

All A.C.E. Language Institute students and staff participated in the clothing drive, Healy said.

Several of these students said they chose to organize a clothing drive for ROOTS after hearing stories of runaways living on the cold streets with nowhere to go. The students believe the clothing drive has helped ROOTS clothe the homeless and keep them warm during the upcoming rough winter months.

"Our students learned about the issues of runaways and homelessness among young adults in our society," Healy said.

"(They) learned how to run a drive, developed their leadership and English skills and connected in a positive way with the community."

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Title: Clothing drive seeks to help "Share the Warmth" | Author: Seth Peterson | Section: News | Published Date: 2009-12-02 | Internal ID: 6726