OKC Firefighters Local 157 delivers coats for kids to Greystone Elementary

okcfirefighterslogoOKLAHOMA CITY (Nov. 18, 2013) — Students at Greystone Upper Elementary will no longer have to worry about waiting at the bus stop without a coat, thanks to the generosity of the Oklahoma City Firefighters Local 157. Today the firefighters delivered 500 new winter coats, one for each student at the Oklahoma City public school.

“We’ve been raising funds to provide coats and shoes for Oklahoma City children for more than 20 years now,” said Phil Sipe, president of the Firefighter’s Local 157. “But this year, being able to provide enough coats for each child at this school, we just couldn’t be happier to help.”

The Local 157 launched a partnership last year with Firefighters Coats for Kids Foundation, a division of the largest non-profit distributer of new coats in the U.S., Operation Warm. Through this partnership, the firefighters are able to provide brand new, American-made coats to children who need them most.

Sipe said the fundraising effort was assisted by local companies, including Continental Resources, McIntyre Law, and NFP Maschino, Hudelson & Associates, among others.

“We wouldn’t have been able to provide coats for these kids without the generosity of our Oklahoma Companies,” Sipe said. “We’re thankful for their willingness to partner with us and help those who need it most this time of year.”

Greystone Upper Elementary was identified by the Local 157 as an Oklahoma City public school with the greatest need. More than 220,000, or 23 percent, of Oklahoma children live in families with incomes below the federal poverty level, according to the Kids Count data center.

“This is the kind of thing we like to do outside of our normal job,” Sipe said. “Giving back to the community, it’s who we are. And to see that smile on these kids faces, well, there’s nothing better than that.”

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