@TorontoPolice Headquarters Winter Coat Drive for the Homeless | 2018





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Published on Feb 5, 2018

For the past six years, staff at Toronto Police Headquarters Duty Desk have been gathering warm winter clothing for downtown Toronto's homeless as part of their annual Winter Coat Drive.

The 2018 campaign has been a huge success, with several hundred warm coats, hats, and mittens donated by Toronto Police Headquarters officers and civilians, as well as neighbourhood residents.

The donated items were delivered to several locations that support Downtown Toronto's homeless, including Haven Toronto on Jarvis St., Covenant House on Gerrard St., the Salvation Army Florence Booth House on Queen West, and Women's Residence on Dundas St. W.

The annual clothing drive is organized by Duty Desk staffers P.C. Joanne Tawton and Station Duty Clerk Gary Long, with help from various TPS Headquarters members.

"We were overwhelmed with the generosity of the people who came by" said Gary Long. "This has been one of the coldest winters in a while, so there is such a need. And we'll be back at it again next year, and hope people will help us, or make a donation to one of the shelters".

"What we've got is substantial, close to 300 coats - for men, women, and children - so these should really help out several of the shelters" added Tawton.

"This has been an extremely cold winter, so any items of clothing really make a huge difference... they can really be the difference between life and death for some of these guys, so it is much appreciated" said Lauro Monteiro, Executive Director of Haven Toronto, a shelter on Jarvis St. for men over age 50. "This has absolutely been the worst year across the city for people that are homeless. This year in shelters, drop-in centres, and warming shelters, we have close to 7000 people on the street... and the weather doesn't help. Can you imagine being in your 60's or 70's and having to sleep outside, in any weather conditions?"

The clothing donations were similarly welcomed heartily at Covenant House, who specialize in working with homeless and at-risk youth. "The donations really help, especially given the weather this year. ...We have an absolutely amazing relationship with Toronto Police. The officers of the TPS are a great partner with our organization and they really do help us out" said Michael Shiner, Associate Manager of Public Relations for Covenant House Toronto.

For more information, or to make a donation, please visit:




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