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Statewide coat drive taking requests and donations

Published: Sep. 26, 2021 at 11:52 AM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Lexington hip hop artist and community activist Devine Carama has launched his annual coat drive.

‘A Coat to Keep the Cold Away Youth Coat Drive’ has been running 8 years.

Brand new coat donations can be dropped off Wednesday through Sunday at the Loudon House in Lexington. It’s located at 209 Castlewood Drive. Monetary donations can be accepted any time online.

Carama said the coat request forms will open at the end of October.

“Early, it was just a coat exchange....we evolved from that to doing brand new coats only and serving over 20 cities in Kentucky,” Carama said.

He said the first year, 40 coats were donated. His goal this year is to deliver 3,000.

Carama’s nonprofit Believing in Forever Inc. focuses on the students.

“We work hand-in-hand with the family resource center at the schools, so a lot of our requests come from the schools and then we compile the coats they need and we deliver there,” he said.

He said anyone in Kentucky can request a coat.

“Especially in the year of a pandemic, as somebody who’s been a struggling, single father before, we get tons of emails and letters talking about how helping them meet that basic need has been so huge,” he said. “We get letters from Eastern Kentucky where some kids have to walk a quarter of a mile or more to the bus stop.”

Carama said the drive serves children in over 20 cities in Kentucky, and he’s looking to add more this year. He said Believing in Forever Inc. has partnered with several stores, including Walmart, Target, Macy’s and Meijer to shop for coats.

Anyone with questions can send them to believinginforever@gmail.com.

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