Hurricane Sandy Relief Plans Announced

Operation Warm and Firefighters Coats for Kids Foundation Mobilizing to Provide New Coats to Children Devastated by Hurricane Sandy

Philadelphia, PA – National non-profit Operation Warm and Firefighters Coats for Kids Foundation have launched an emergency relief effort to infuse storm-shattered communities in New York and New Jersey with brand new winter coats for children whose families have been devastated by hurricane Sandy.  “The astounding aftermath of hurricane Sandy has resulted in firefighters throughout the region mobilizing to help as many families as possible,” stated Bill Romaka, IAFF 1st District Vice President “Our ability to join forces quickly to offer relief means that we can get warm coats to children in the most devastated areas before the impending nor`easter hits. It’s mission critical.”

FedEx has generously offered to transport over 7,000 new coats directly into the New York and New Jersey’s storm-hit communities. The coats will arrive Friday November 9th, and firefighters from the Mid-Atlantic States will work with local disaster relief agencies to distribute the new coats immediately. “We couldn’t be more grateful to local firefighters  and to FedEx who have literally jumped into action to help us provide new winter coats to families who have lost so much,” said Dick Sanford, Operation Warm’s founder and chairman.  “It’s truly incredible to work with a community of men and women who care so deeply for the communities they serve and represent.  With firefighter’s expertise, we can target those families who have been hardest hit and respond as rapidly as possible.”

Originally launched to address a local problem with underserved children in a Philadelphia suburb, Operation Warm has grown nationally to address the serious need throughout the U.S. for a basic essential; a warm winter coat.  Since its inception in 1998, OW has distributed coats in 37 states and in February 2012, distributed the one millionth coat. The International Association of Firefighters (IAFF) represents 300,000 professional fire fighters in North America and supports Operation Warm’s efforts.

“Mobilizing together means immediate and tangible relief to the thousands of families that were devastated by hurricane Sandy.  We need to get coats to children in New Jersey and New York as quickly as possible.  The weather is turning cold quickly, and we need to keep these kids safe and warm,” Dominick Marino, President of the Professional Firefighters of New Jersey said.

Donations to the Hurricane Sandy Disaster Relief Fund may be made at: www.operationwarm.org/sandy

About Firefighters Coats for Kids Foundation
Firefighters Coats for Kids is a division of nonprofit Operation Warm, a 501(c)3 founded in 1998. Operation Warm’s mission is to warm the hearts, minds and bodies of children in poverty through the gift of warmth – a brand new winter coat. Community service is at the core of a firefighter’s mission. Through Firefighters Coats for Kids, they inspire hope and empower the communities they serve, by providing NEW winter coats to those children most in need. By 2013, Firefighters Coats for Kids plans to distribute American-made coats, bringing back jobs to North America and further battling the cycle of poverty.  For more information visit: www.firefighterscoatsforkids.org

About Operation Warm Inc.
Operation Warm Inc. is one of the nation’s largest nonprofit providers of new winter coats to children in need. Our vision is that every child wearing a new winter coat is healthy, able to attend school regularly and develop a strong self-esteem. Operation Warm has distributed coats in 37 states.  Along with Coats for Kids Foundation (Combined Federal Campaign #52316), a service of Operation Warm, Inc., we served our MILLIONTH child in February 2012 – a momentous milestone. For more information about Operation Warm visit www.operationwarm.org.

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