WJRT-TV (Flint) and WIOG-FM (Bay City-Saginaw-Flint) have joined together to support the Salvation Army for the 33rd Annual Coats for Kids campaign. The collection began this Tuesday and will continue for five weeks until November 8.

Last year, more than 800 children benefited from the annual coat and winter gear drive. The Salvation Army anticipates a greater need this year.

“There are kids who don’t have coats and a coat will make all the difference in the world,” said Salvation Army Major Randy Hellstrom.

After more than 85 inches of snow fell in the Flint area and temperatures tumbled well below zero, dressing properly became even more important last winter.

“We know how cold Michigan winters can be, so it’s very important to be able to do this every single year,” said WIOG co-host Nate Rose.

Walking to school or a bus stop without attire can reduce children’s heart rates, promote loss of coordination and create confusion, making it difficult to learn in the classroom.

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