School governor sets up new annual campaign to give every Notts child a coat this winter

The campaign will ensure every child is warm over winter.

Friday, 10th December 2021, 5:05 pm

A Nottinghamshire-based charity called Youth Enterprise and Employability Academy has started an annual campaign as dozens of children across the county are turning up to school without coats over winter.

This campaign, called Coats for Children, has been set up to raise awareness of the issue and help provide children with a warm coat.

Charity founder and governor of multiple schools in Nottinghamshire, Kurtis-Jay Castle, said his heart ‘broke’ when he had to help two shivering children without coats warm up while visiting a school.

New campaign to give children coats over winter. Credit: Krzysztof Kowalik

He said: “After talking to teachers across Nottinghamshire alone, it became more apparent that more and more vulnerable children are arriving at schools without coats, or coats that simply aren’t fit for purpose, and junior schools seem to be the worst off at the moment.

“It really shocked me to learn that it’s not just one or two children, but it’s many across multiple schools.

“Out of the first five schools that we contacted, every one of them had required at least three or more coats.”

The charity began the campaign last week with around 40 heavily discounted coats from Primark that range up to the size of a ten-year-old.

Within hours of contacting schools, more than half were taken.

Jo Yardley, headteacher at Church Vale Primary School in Mansfield, said: “We are finding as a village that children have inappropriately thin, small and not sufficiently warm coats that would afford children the protection they need from the weather.

“This has been reported to be because of financial strains on the family.

“Lack of food in the home has to be a priority for the families at this time and they unfortunately cannot pay for everything.”

In order for the charity to maintain the unexpected demand, they are asking for people to donate money via their PayPal, purchase coats off their Amazon wish-list, or donate second-hand winter coats, however support is needed for drycleaning costs.

Schools can also submit a request to help their pupils get a warm coat by emailing the charity with the ages of the children who need help, and the name of the teacher and school.

To find out more, visit the charity’s Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/YEEAUK

You can contact them at: ​[email protected]

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