January 13, 2011 in Washington Voices

Winter clothing drive helps needy students

By The Spokesman-Review
 
Pia Hallenberg photo

Grant Elementary parent volunteer Heidi Hash with donations.
(Full-size photo)

Map of this story's location
To donate

The South Perry Sock Drive is still going on – look for bins at local businesses, or drop off new or gently used winter clothing at Grant Elementary School.

Boots, socks, hats and gloves are especially needed.

You can also drop them off with the South Perry Blog. The blog is at The Shop, 924 S. Perry Street, today from 3 to 5 p.m.

Remember the South Perry Sock Drive? The South Perry Business and Neighborhood Association started a sock and boot drive in early December. If you’ve spent time in the neighborhood you’ve probably seen the collection bins at South Perry Pizza, The Shop and other local merchants.

What was pretty amazing about this sock drive is that bags of hats, scarves and mittens began appearing before the official bins were put out. Some showed up at South Perry Pizza and some were dropped off on location with the South Perry Blog.

“We have had an excellent response,” said Heidi Hash, a parent volunteer at Grant Elementary School and a member of the South Perry Business and Neighborhood Association. “We could still use some boots and some socks, now that there’s more snow coming.”

Hash has a big pile of hats, scarves, gloves, jackets and boots filling up a pool table in her basement. This is the third table full of winter clothing that has been collected.

Grant Elementary School has one of highest percentages of low-income children in the Spokane school district, and Hash said she’d noticed some of the kids didn’t have plain winter gear such as a hat and some gloves.

“Some of the kids just look so cold when they come to school,” Hash said.

She brought up the idea for a clothing drive at the SPBNA meeting back in November, and it quickly gained support. She works with school counselors and teachers at Grant to determine which students need winter clothing the most.

“We just gave out a bunch of coats, that felt really good,” said Hash last week. “And I have all these matching hats and scarves that someone knitted and donated. We are thinking of doing a special giveaway for those with the older girls.”

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