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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — One group is doing everything it can to make certain that kids across Pittsburgh are keeping warm.
“Operation Warm” has made it its business to make sure no kid is cold on the way to school.
“I’m just happy that she’s getting a coat right now so that she can be warm,” fifth grader Ja’Kaiyah Stover said.
In the past 20 years, they have done this 3 million times.
It starts with a volunteer matching up kids with some of their greeters. The greeters then take the kids to get fitted for their coats.
At the end of the day, they’ve got an opportunity where all the kids get to put their names in their jackets to make sure they will have their jackets all winter long.
Thursday’s event was at Pittsburgh Allegheny K-5 and IGS Energy helped to provide the volunteers and the coats.
“Our president, he said that if we are doing well financially as a company, we owe it to our communities to give back,” Ryker Wasmund with IGS Energy said. “There’s many different ways in which we do that.”
But it’s more than corporate donations that make Operation Warm happen.
“We had a girl last year in Seattle who was 8 years old and for her birthday gift, she started a fundraiser to raise money and bought, like, 40 coats and gave them to a church,” Julie D’Esposito, with Operation Warm, said, “so it can be anyone, so it’s not just corporate partners.”
For the students, it was a day for them to feel extra special.
KDKA-TV’s Rick Dayton: “What was fun about it?”
Pittsburgh Allegheny K-5 student Kordae Frazier: “I actually got to speak to everybody and I actually got to meet some of the people that was standing in the crowd.”
“It’s a feeling that you can’t get from really a whole lot of things on this planet. To be able to provide a coat for a kid that’s in need, especially in this weather today, it’s a fantastic feeling,” Tom Cephas, with IGS Energy, said.