Donations to Warm the Children need a boost in Washtenaw County
Editor's note: The amount raised this year has been corrected in this article.
This year Dr. Mitch Kaplan will make a $2,000 donation to Warm the Children. He’s made a $2,000 donation annually for the past 9 years, since opening his periodontics practice in Ann Arbor. “Nine years ago, as a staff we picked Warm the Children to donate to in honor of our dental colleagues,” Kaplan explains.
Each year his office sends holiday cards to local dentists telling them that the donation was made in their honor. “We continue to do it because it’s something nice for the community, and it’s a good cause.”
Dr. Kaplan’s donation is one of many that Warm the Children relies on each year, but this year donations are coming in slower.
The Warm the Children Program has seen a decline in donations across Washtenaw County for the 2012 season.
But it’s not unique to Washtenaw County. Warm the Children is a program that is sponsored in different communities by news outlets throughout the nation. AnnArbor.com sponsors Washtenaw County efforts. Middletown, Conn., home of Warm the Children’s founder Mack Stewart, also reports that donations are coming in slowly.
Each year Warm the Children works with the community to provide new winter clothing for 3,000 kids in the county. AnnArbor.com sponsors the program annually and covers all overhead costs. Every dime collected goes towards the charitable efforts. And every contribution helps the program work towards its goal.
Jill Tewsley, an AnnArbor.com employee, has helped manage the Warm the Children Campaign for the past 3 years.
“Even though donations are on the decline, the need this year is even greater,” Tewsley said. Though the weather is only starting to get cold, the recipients typically spend the stipend on more than just coats and gloves — warm pajamas, footwear, and other essentials also can be part of the $90 purchase order.
“For over a decade the community has embraced this program and donated generously. We are still in great need, and there is still time to give.”
The fundraising goal for 2012 goes unchanged from the year prior, $250,000. This year’s total through Nov. 21 was $69,248.38. Donations are collected through the end of the year.
The funds for this year’s recipients were raised during last year’s season. If this year’s goals are not met, it may impact the number of children who are served in the winter of 2013.
Donating is easy. You can mail in the form printed in the newspaper, go to the form here, or call the Warm The Children hotline at 734-623-2525. Donations also are accepted at any United Bank and Trust branch in Washtenaw County.
If your business or organization is looking for a special way to give back to the community this holiday season, consider supporting Warm the Children. We would love to hear about innovative ways that local groups raise funds for this worthy cause.