Warmth from the Millyard Coalition Seeking Donations of Food and Warm Clothing

Warmth from the Millyard Coalition Seeking Donations of Food and Warm Clothing

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

The season of giving is about to begin and there’s no better place to start than right here at UNH. During the next two weeks, white cardboard bins will be located around campus to collect donations of food and warm clothing for the student-driven community service project Warmth from the Millyard Coalition. 

Now in its seventh year, Warmth from the Millyard (WFMYC) draws on community partners at UNH and in local cities and towns to round up these necessities and give them to area charitable organizations for distribution. 

The service project was launched through Kate Hanson’s community leadership program at UNH Manchester in 2007. Last year, the WFMYC moved to Durham. 

“This project is a powerful opportunity to teach leadership skills while supporting the important work that happens within our communities,” says Hanson, co-founder of the community leadership program and a professor at the Thompson School of Applied Science. 

The donation bins, bearing the WFMYC logo, will be outside Barton Hall, Taylor Hall, Pettee Hall, Zais Hall, the Elliott Alumni Center, the New England Center, the MUB, and Health Services from Oct. 31 through Nov. 14. Recipients of the goods include Cornucopia Food Pantry, Portsmouth’s Operation Blessing, Somersworth Youth Safe Haven, the Rochester School System, and Fair Tide in Kittery, Maine. 

“To understand the need of the community, one must investigate the community itself. In New Hampshire, there is a strong need for warm clothing of all sizes and food.  Poverty is becoming a huge issue here and many families may not have sufficient funds to buy their child a new coat every year, so through donations we can curb this need,” says Betty Hernandez, a senior majoring in health management and policy. 

Since its inception, Warmth from the Millyard has collected more than 15,000 articles of winter clothing and collaborated with more than 100 organizations. The project is a perfect win-win: those in need receive clothing and food, and students hone their community leadership skills while helping to raise awareness about poverty in New Hampshire. 

Other efforts to further the cause include an open skate at the Whittemore Center on Nov. 4 at 6:45 p.m. where members of the Millyard Coalition are asking attendees to bring food and coins to donate to the Cornucopia Food Pantry.  The students are challenging UNH and Durham residents to bring in enough quarters to line the ice skating rink’s entire border as a visual demonstration of their commitment to serve the local community. 

On Nov. 16, as part of UNH Serves, volunteers will meet in Putnam Hall from 10 a.m. to noon to sort donations and plan for their delivery. Warm clothing and food can be dropped off during this time as well. 

Warmth from the Millyard is a collaborative partnership between UNH and the community leadership program. At UNH Manchester, the program continues through Tom Birch's economics class and the work of Ginger Lever, a founding member of Warmth from the Millyard. 

For more information about the Warmth from the Millyard Coalition, contact Hanson at kate.hanson@unh.edu, 2-1064 or follow the group on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/#!/warmthfromthemillyardcoalition