Coats for Kids Competition Underway at Garden Courte Memory Care Community



Keeping all local kids warm is the goal of the coat drive.

There are a few constants in every Northwest winter: kids will outgrow coats, you won’t find that missing mitten until late August, and you’ll get sick of the early dark well before Christmas.  But within the hustle and bustle of this soggy season, there are still ways to help others even after the holidays are over.

Garden Courte Memory Care Community is an active and vital part of our community.  They not only provide loving care to many of our older family members, they open their doors and hearts in outreach activities to veterans and military families, schoolchildren, and those in need throughout the county.

This spring’s annual fundraiser comes in the form of a challenge.  Care organizations from up and down Lilly Road will compete to bring in the largest number of donated coats for the Little Red Schoolhouse Project.  Between February 14 and March 15, donations of new or gently used coats, hooded sweatshirts, and new underwear will be collected, tallied, and the facility who brings in the most will win a staff-wide pizza party.  Prizes for second and third place will be an amazing array of treats provided by Garden Courte’s renowned Chef Rubi.

Some of the participating donation sites include Garden Courte, The Sequoia Assisted Living Community, Group Health’s Olympia Medical Center, Providence Mother Joseph Care Center, Emeritus Senior Living, and Evergreen Nursing and Rehabilitation.  While a few will simply encourage their employees to donate in-house, Garden Courte is open to receiving donations from anyone and everyone.

Marilyn Richards of Garden Courte says there is a “desperate need right now” for coats and hopes many will participate in the drive.  Cheryl Huffman, a committee member from the Little Red Schoolhouse Project, agrees that these items are things they “have a hard time getting enough of.”  Sizes can range from toddler through adult as they provide supplies for students through high school.

The Little Red Schoolhouse Project is a community organization which focuses primarily on providing schoolchildren in Thurston County with adequate school clothes, supplies, and coats.  While focused on Olympia and the surrounding areas, Huffman assured me that no-one is ever turned away empty handed.  Partnering with organizations like Garden Courte has “made a huge difference in being able to provide these things.”  For over 20 years they have partnered with local churches, care organizations, business partners, and community members to help our children succeed.  With no bricks-and-mortar building of their own, they rely on the kindness and support of others to fulfill their mission.

Questions about the drive can be directed to Marketing Directors Marilyn Richards or Dawn Peterson of Garden Courte at 360-491-4435.  Donations will be accepted there from 8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.  For more details on the Little Red Schoolhouse Project or how to participate, please visit their website.


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