Employees from Stifel, in partnership with Operation Warm, provided a new winter coat to every student at Drummond Elementary on Nov. 14.
“When I first saw these coats, I was really happy because some people wouldn't have any coats and this day would bring them joy because they would get a coat today,” third grader Evan Ramon said.
Over 650 coats were distributed to students in kindergarten through fifth grade. Stifel volunteers personally met with the students during the distribution, ensuring proper fitting of the coats. Additionally, they took the initiative to write each student's name on a tag inside the coat with a permanent marker. To enhance the winter preparedness of the students, Stifel also provided a goodie bag containing winter gloves.
“It’s such a huge deal because some of our kids come to school without a coat every day and you know, they're cold, they want to go outside and play and now all of our students have a coat,” assistant principal Carley Tankersley said. “There's no stigma with this. Every single kid got a coat.”
Stifel has partnered with Operation Warm since 2018 to provide brand new coats to children. Operation Warm, a national nonprofit that manufactures their own coats, is funded by corporate, community and government partnerships; in addition to donations from grants, foundations, groups and individuals.
“It’s just so amazing because it's a little warm right now, but it's gonna be so cold here soon,” Tankersley said. “We know our kids are going to be warm when they're standing out at the bus stop. We know that our kids are all gonna get to go outside to recess because they all have a coat that they can wear outside. It's just so amazing to see not just how excited all of the adults are here, but how excited all of our kids are that they get to take home something new.”
Several classes brought in thank you cards and handed them to the volunteers working in the gym. Showing appreciation is a life skill that Tankersley said staff try to teach to every student.
“We want to build up thankfulness and appreciation to our students,” she said. “It's an important life skill and so we got to see that in action today.”
As the weather gets colder, Nina Jones is prepared for whatever comes.
“I’m ready for a snow day.”