top of page

Coats for Kids II

Sometimes your part in His Plan is to connect two other disparate organizations with matching needs. This is what Dave Scharett, the President of our Conference, did when he received a message from the SVDP (Saint Vincent de Paul) District President that Holy Spirit parish in northern Virginia had over 1000 coats left over from their drive and would anyone have a need. Dave wasted no time in contacting Holy Spirit parish and selected the first time slot they had on Monday, December 12th, at 0730, the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Dave and John Buccigrossi were there bright and early and had hoped to receive at least 150 coats. Patricia Tang, who led the effort at Holy Spirit, asked if they might want more. They ended up with 500 coats as well as scarves, mittens and hats! Dave's full size pickup truck was stuffed to the gills.

Dave already knew where these coats were needed. Hope for Appalachia Virginia Inc was in desperate need of coats and other winter clothing for kids that, incredibly, are still living in deplorable condition after the late summer flooding in eastern Kentucky.

Pastor Mike Dodson leads the ministry at Hope for Appalachia Virginia and had this to say when queried about the situation there.

"The Appalachian region of our nation is one of the most economically depressed areas in our nation. While it varies some, usually 4 or 5 of the counties that we minister to are in the bottom 10 most poorest counties in the nation. Most of the others in the bottom 10 category are in the reservation lands in the midwest. Of course, the devastating floods this past summer made this bad situation so much worse. The loss of life and of property was simply overwhelming. Many of the residents, including many of our young people and school staff, lost everything including their homes. We had multiple teams go out to help with the clean up during the first couple of months following the flood and their stories are heart breaking. Many of the folks that lost their homes refused to leave their land. Many of the homes etc have been passed down from family and it is all they have. As a result all some folks had were tents in their yards.


Until my first mission trip to Appalachia, I had no idea of the extent of poverty in Appalachia. That first time (and since) we met children that had never had a toothbrush, did not know what toothpaste was, had no socks (which is why we require all of our hope boxes to include a toothbrush, toothpaste, and socks), did not have a coat during a snowstorm, etc."

Pastor Mike was extremely grateful that the connection was made between Holy Spirit parish and his Ministry through the efforts of the Saint Faustina Conference.

"Thank you so much for the wonderful donation of 500 coats! Coats, hats, and gloves are such a huge need that this donation will indeed be a blessing. Many of my trips to Appalachia over the past 12 years have been in the winter months. Each trip we meet children that simply do not have coats or any warm outerwear. We often see kids that do not even have socks. Thank you!!"

You can donate directly to the Hope for Appalachia project here:

bottom of page