Morgantown Firefighters gift winter coats to children in need

Morgantown Firefighters from the IAFF Local 313 take a picture with a group of children that received a coat through the Operation Warm program. (Photo Courtesy: City of Morgantown)
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MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (WDTV)-- The Morgantown Firefighters IAFF Local 313 provided new winter coats to more than 350 children in Monongalia County.

“All the time that we spend dealing with cold weather emergencies is a reactive response,” said Derek Porter, Operation Warm coordinator for the Morgantown Firefighters IAFF Local 313. “This is one way to interact with the community and keep kids safe in the winter months.”

The Morgantown Firefighters IAFF Local 313 has participated in the Operation Warm program for five years, according to a press release from the City of Morgantown. The firefighters are able to provide brand new coats to children in need through the national program.

Last week, the Local 313 was able to give out coats to 360 children in kindergarten and first grade at nine elementary schools in Monongalia County.

All coats are made in the U.S. and are purchased with local monetary donations, according to the City of Morgantown.

TeleTech has been a primary contributor to funding the coats for the last two years, according to the press release.

The Local 313 would like to thank those who have made donations.

“Operation Warm builds self-esteem for kids that get their own coat, the smiles on their faces that they get when they receive a coat of their own is incredible,” said Porter. “All the materialistic things are so small when you realize that there are kids out there that don’t have something as simple as a coat. It’s a humbling, heartwarming experience.”