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Hillsboro coat and blanket drive for the local community happening now through Dec. 18.

A Hillsboro business is partnering with a local nonprofit organization to help people stay warm this winter.

Through Dec. 18, brokers at Windermere Real Estate in Hillsboro will be collecting coats and blankets in all sizes to benefit Hillsboro-based Community Action.

"It's more of just being able to interact with the community more and have people know that not only do we sell houses, but we also try and take care of people too," said Brenda Kern with Hillsboro Windermere Real Estate. "Something that's important to us is to not only giving back to those that need it, but have people really understand that we really do care about the community that we work in and live in."

The Hillsboro office has participated in the campaign for the last 15 years. Last year, the office served more than 120 families in the area with the help of the Virginia Garcia Memorial Health Clinic.

"We're not covering thousands and thousands of people, but certainly, a hundred-plus families that can be warm and have adequate necessities for the winter," Kern said. "I think that this makes a big impact."

The business selects a different local non-profit to work with throughout the year for its foundation funds, community service day, and "Share the Warmth" campaign.

Community Action's corporate and community partnerships manager Kristy Reddick said Community Action organizers appreciate all of the help they can get.

"We don't usually have the capacity to take clothing donations," Reddick said. "However, this time of the year we collect warm items, especially coats, gloves and socks in preparation for the point in time homeless counts."

The homeless count helps identify how many people are homeless in the community. The agency plans to give out the coats and blankets from the campaign to those that attend the event in January.

"When it gets cold and if there are not beds available, we have very limited amount of beds in Washington County for people," Reddick said . "So, a lot of people have no choice but to spend the night outside… Extra pairs of things like warm socks and hats and coats are vital."

Reddick added that it's exciting to work with Windermere because it raises more than just awareness about these issues in the area.

"… the need that we have as an agency to involve our whole community and addressing these problems of poverty and homelessness," she said. "A coat won't fix it, but a coat can help."

People can drop off gently used coats and new blankets at the Windermere office in Hillsboro at, 1341 N.E. Orenco Station Parkway.

For more information about Community Action in Hillsboro, visit www.caowash.org.


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