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    Donate a new or gently used and clean coat for a chance to “flip the switch” and turn on the lights at New Haven’s Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony

    (New Haven, CT) The City of New Haven announced today the launch of a Coat Drive to benefit the homeless shelters that operate in the City. Donations of new or gently used and clean coats, hats, scarves, gloves and mittens for men, women and children are being requested. The Coat Drive will run from Monday, November 18th through Monday, December 2nd, with donations being accepted between the hours of 9 am and 4:30 pm at the Coat Drive drop-off location at New Haven City Hall (in the Youth Services office on the first floor).

    Any person who donates will be entered into a drawing for a chance to “turn on the lights” at New Haven’s annual Tree Lighting Ceremony on Thursday, December 5th at 6 pm on the New Haven Green. The winning donor will be notified on Tuesday, December 3rd.

    “Especially during these tough economic times, there is a real need for donations of warm clothes for the homeless among us, which includes many children. I encourage everyone to remember those who need assistance,” urged Mayor John DeStefano, Jr. “The goal is to deliver hundreds of coats to various homeless shelters in New Haven in the first week of December.”

    On any given night in the greater New Haven region (which in addition to New Haven includes Ansonia, Bethany, Branford, Derby, East Haven, Guilford, Hamden, Madison, Milford, North Branford, North Haven, Orange, Shelton, West Haven and Woodbridge) hundreds of individuals--including families with children--are homeless and living on the streets or in temporary shelters. Each year, the Connecticut Coalition to End Homelessness conducts a “point in time” count with cooperation from the City of New Haven and numerous volunteers. In 2013, the homeless count found that there were a total of 767 homeless within the City of New Haven, including 248 families and 138 children. This is a 12.6% increase in the number of homeless within the City of New Haven over the previous year.


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