In the Spirit of MLK

Tuesday, January 17, 2012
Waterbury Republican-American (print edition)
Waterbury, CT

City charities provide some warmth to residents in need

On the day honoring the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., the city’s needy lined up across the street from a park named in his honor, braving the chilly weather for the chance to find some free winter clothes.

Hundreds of people gathered in the auditorium at New Op­portunities Inc. Monday for a free winter clothing giveaway sponsored by the agency along with Acts 4 Ministries, which provided the clothing.

“This is part of what Martin Luther King is about, giving back to the community, making everyone equal,” Melissa Zwang of New Opportunities said. “It’s in honor of him that you become part of the commu­nity.”

Zwang said more than 70 vol­unteers, including teenagers from local schools, helped the needy find the clothing they needed.

Laura Coffin, executive di­rector of Acts 4, said needy from all walks of life and from throughout the city attended the event. The charity, which provides clothing, household items, toiletries and other ne­cessities to the poor and to vic­tims of disasters like house fires, coordinates several give­away events each year.

Acts 4 has temporarily closed its East Aurora Street headquarters, so this give­away was a good chance to connect with the community again, Coffin said.

At this event, she said, a number of former convicts from the city’s halfway houses came for clothing, but since the charity is usually short of men’s clothes, some had to leave empty-handed. Acts 4 is still accepting donations of men’s clothing, she said.

Coffin said the event pro­vided clothing for more than 400 people.

“We were very pleased there was a steady stream of people,” she said. “I think we helped more people in this lo­cation than last year at Berke­ley Heights.”

To donate clothing to Acts 4 Ministries, contact the charity at (203) 574-ACTS or email acts4 [at] att [dot] net.

Return to the previous pageBACK    Navigate to the top of this pageTOP