Koats for Kids is an annual campaign that aims to provide winter gear for children in need in Winnipeg. The program is run by United Way Winnipeg and has been active for several years. Every year from September to January, Winnipeggers donate over 6,000 coats, and Koats for Kids shares this winter gear with Winnipeg families. The program works directly with schools, daycares, and social service agencies to get the items into the hands of those who need them.
The Norwest Co-op is one of the many drop-off locations for donations. Other locations include Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service stations, Access Storage, AMJ Campbell, and Toys R Us. The campaign is also looking for gently-used kid’s winter gear, including coats, boots, ski pants, toques, mittens, and scarves.
The program has been a success in the past years. In 2023-2024 version of Koats for Kids launched Wednesday, September 20, and the United Way is looking for donations to keep people warm in the winter months. The program first started in 1989, and they distribute around 6,000 winter coats every year, along with thousands of other winter clothing items.