David Andrews says demand is up 30 per cent at Clothing Assistance over this time last year.
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A young girl just wanted someone her age to be warm this winter.
Dennis Dunne is the assistant manager at Clothing Assistance. While going through the pockets of a recently donated pink winter coat, he found a note inside from the seven-year-old who had given it away.
“I hope you are warm in this jact (sic) love Emily,” the hand-scrawled note said.
Emily will no doubt get her wish. Demand for winter clothing is at an all-time high and supplies are low at the distribution centre on North May Street as the temperature drops. Dunne said up to 30 people are coming in every day for everything from jackets to long underwear.
Last Saturday, a man wearing only a T-shirt sat outside of the centre waiting for it to open so that he could get his hands on any warm clothing he could. Dunne said he gave the man several items. But others aren’t so lucky.
“People are coming in daily looking for heavy, warm clothing,” he said. “We didn’t have it and had to turn them away.”
The centre is doing what they can to get people suited up for winter. But they are asking the public for help to make sure everyone who needs clothing gets some.
“As much as we can get. As much as we can get our hands on because the demand is so high,” Dunne said.
They’re asking for coats, sweaters, socks, underwear and even warm blankets. Because some flood victims are still without heat, Dunne said people have been asking for anything that will keep them warm. And the centre will take it.
“We accept everything as long as someone can get use from it,” he said.
While the flood has increased demand, Clothing Assistance president David Andrews said a 30 per cent increase in traffic at the centre is because of a number of reasons.
“We’re getting a lot more people coming in and the demand for clothing has just increased. People are having difficulty,” he said.
Dunne, who has worked at the centre since it opened in 2006, agrees. The centre works on a flexible price system. That means everyone who needs clothing will get it if it’s there.
“If you come through the door and you have no money and you need a jacket we will provide you with that jacket without any cost. If you can afford to pay a dollar or two we’d be grateful to accept that donation.”
Donations can be made directly at the centre located at 404 North May Street from Monday to Saturday between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.
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