This project started with one person, Nicole, who is a Gethrr member.  We realized soon after that we needed to join in and help.  Read her words below about how things came about!


I hate being cold, despise it.  My feet, in particular, are cold just about year round.  I wear socks to bed most nights.  So, every year when winter rolls around, I’m extra grateful for things like cozy socks, sweaters, and a warm home.  The temperatures were dropping a few weeks ago and once again, my gratitude for a warm home kicked in on cue.  But not everyone is so fortunate.

I started thinking about all the people who live on the street for various reasons and my heart ached for them.  I’m an avid snowboarder, but when the temperatures are too cold, I’m either prepared with winter gear galore, or I simply go inside.  So the idea of HAVING to brave the cold potentially all day every day sounds like my worst nightmare.

With all the talk about whether or not we should be helping Syrian refugees, there was more chatter about how we should be helping our own people, our own homeless.  So, I decided to ask people to put their money where their mouths were.  I went on facebook with absolutely no plan and said “I want to help keep our homeless warm, who wants to help me?”  And people were over the moon excited and quickly wanted to know how they could help.  They wanted to help and they wanted to do it NOW.

I knew I had to act quickly.  I created a facebook group, called Cold Hands, Warm Hearts, to keep people up to date on how to help and how to spread the word.  I wanted to encourage people to help however they felt resonated with them – new or used clothing and listed specific items I was looking for, monetary donations, or letters of encouragement to pack up with the kits.

The response was overwhelming.  People were so very generous in so many ways.  Friends, family, clients, strangers, knitters, and elementary school students all helped pitch in.  I was able to fill in some blank spaces with the monetary donations and all together we’ve been able to pack up 60 kits!  There are a few odds and ends left over of the new items, along with several bags of donations of coats, and other winter items.

Each backpack is filled with:

  • letter of encouragement

  • heat reflective blanket

  • 1 pair of gloves

  • hat

  • scarf

  • 1 pair of socks

  • 1 pair of hand warmers

  • 2 pairs of toe warmers

  • wet hand wipes

  • 6 different snacks

  • 2 mini bottles of water

  • 2 gallon sized ziplock bags to keep items dry

  • a whole lot of love

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The kits will be distributed the first week of January in conjunction with Philly Restart who feed the homeless every week in Philadelphia.

60 little love kits is far and above anything I could have done on my own.  But I share this story to show how it started with me, just one person.  And no plan.  A call to action was all that was required.  We so often think that one person can’t make a difference.  But I call your bluff.


We here at Gethrr absolutely love everything about what Nicole wrote.  And especially these lines at the end, “I share this story to show how it started with me, just one person.  And no plan.  A call to action was all that was required.  We so often think that one person can’t make a difference.  But I call your bluff.”  This is what we’re all about!  How is it possible that one person, giving $1 or $5 a month, make a difference?  Well, stick around because we do this every month.

We’ll be handing these out January 4th @4pm in Center City.  If you’re interested in helping hand them out & feed the homeless, please email me at michael@flothemes.weareflo.com/gethrr.

Merry Christmas!

 

 

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