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Wednesday 29 June 2016 6:24 AM
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13:45 Friday 08 January 2016  Written by Grace Witherden

Winter coat appeal set up for the homeless

A winter coat appeal for the homeless in Maidenhead has been set up with the aim to ‘make someone smile’.

Julia Waye, who runs Weight Watchers sessions in Cookham and Maidenhead, wants to collect 100 coats for the homeless in the town.

Not only is she encouraging her members to bring in unwanted and old coats, but she also asks that something is left in the pocket of the coat for the recipient.

The idea was inspired by a new Weight Watchers campaign called ‘Smile’.

Julia said: “The idea is to put something in the coat that would make someone smile, it can be anything from gloves, toiletries to socks. I asked my members to think of what they would want if they were homeless, what would make them smile when they looked in the pocket.

“On Christmas Eve we had a few coats dropped off from people that didn’t come to my classes but had found out about the appeal through word of mouth. It felt very Christmassy.

“I’ve even had a small boy asking if we wanted children’s coats, I said yes and he donated two of his coats and put something in the pockets.

“Any extra coats will go to Slough refugee centre so they will not go to waste.”

“My members are very generous; we had a Macmillan coffee morning last year, our target was £500 and we ended up raising £800.”

So far 48 coats have been collected by Julia, from Old Windsor, but she is still hoping to reach her target of 100.

Once collected they will be taken to Maidenhead Foodshare so the homeless can help themselves to a warm coat for the winter.

If you would like to donate a coat, Julia will be collecting from the following locations:

  • St Joseph’s Church, Cookham Road on Monday at 7pm and Tuesday at 9.30am
  • St Mark’s Methodist Church, Allenby Road on Wednesday at 7.30pm
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