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PR- 442-05
November 30, 2005


New Yorkers Urged to Donate Coats at Collection Sites Throughout the Metropolitan Area

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg today kicked off the 17th Annual New York Cares Coat Drive at the Bowery Mission in Lower Manhattan. The Coat Drive, presented by Health Plus, will collect thousands of gently used adult and children's coats throughout the month of December and distribute them to needy New Yorkers at homeless shelters, agencies serving seniors, and other community organizations.  New York Cares will reach a milestone this December as it prepares to collect and distribute the millionth coat since the Coat Drive's inception in 1989.  Health Plus Executive Director Tom Early and Chief Marketing Officer Ada Rodriguez, Chief Executive Officer of The Sapir Organization James DeCuzzi, President and General Manager of WNBC-TV Frank Comerford, Group Manager & Senior Vice President of Washington Mutual John Benevento, President of the Bowery Mission Ed Morgan and New York Cares Executive Director Ariel Zwang joined the Mayor for the announcement.

"For the past 16 years, the New York Cares Coat Drive has kept thousands of individuals and families in the New York area warm during the cold winter months," said Mayor Bloomberg.  "New Yorkers are among the most generous people in the world, together we have donated almost one million coats since the Drive began in 1989.  I commend New York Cares for their ongoing efforts to help New Yorkers in need across our City all year long and urge New Yorkers to continue their generosity."

"Tens of thousands of New Yorkers, including many families, lack warm coats to get them through the cold winter months," said Executive Director of New York Cares Ariel Zwang. "The Coat Drive is one way many of us can make a big difference in the lives of others this year.  More than 50,000 New Yorkers will donate coats over the next month, and these coats will go straight to the New Yorkers who need them most. We are continually inspired by the generosity of the people of New York - they are living examples of the spirit of giving."

"This is the second year we've been the Presenting Sponsor of the New York Cares Coat Drive, and we couldn't be more pleased with the partnership," said Executive Director of Health Plus Tom Early. 

"This partnership makes so much sense because our organizations' missions are so similar," added Chief Marketing Officer of Health Plus Ada Rodriguez.  "The Coat Drive is an important program that will help bring warmth and comfort to more than 70,000 New Yorkers in need this year."

There is a particular need for large men's winter coats, as well as coats for women and children. To make donations easy, New York Cares has arranged for hundreds of drop-off sites throughout the Metropolitan area:

Public Collection Sites

  • All New York Police Department precincts - at any time, day or night.
  • Business Hours at participating NY/NJ Washington Mutual branches and Janovic Plaza stores.
  • Weekdays 7:30 A.M. - 9:30 A.M. at:
    • Grand Central Terminal (Graybar Passage)
    • New York Penn Station (LIRR and NJ Transit/Amtrak concourses)
    • New York Port Authority Bus Terminal (Main concourse, 42nd St. entrance).
  • Additional drop-off locations can be found online at  

There will be several special events taking place surrounding the annual coat drive. The first event will be the 3rd annual "KISS Cares Kid's Coat Drive" radiothon which will air live from The Virgin Mega Store at 54 East 14th Street in Manhattan on Friday, December 2nd from 6am-midnight. New Yorkers can drop off new, clean, or gently used winter coats anytime during this one-day event. Two special game-day collections will also take place during NFL games at Giants Stadium. Fans can bring coats to the game and donate them in designated collection sites at the stadium. The New York Giants will hold a collection on December 4th, 2005 during the New York Giants vs. Dallas Cowboys game. The New York Jets will collect coats from their fans on January 1st, 2006 at the New York Jets vs. Buffalo Bills game.

Sponsors for the 17th Annual New York Cares Coat Drive include Health Plus (Presenting Sponsor), The Sapir Organization, The Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA), Washington Mutual, WNBC-TV/Telemundo, Viacom Outdoor, Time Warner Cable, UPS, JWT and The New York Times. The Sapir Organization is providing warehouse space for coat storage and sorting during December and January.

Founded in 1987, New York Cares mobilizes 27,000 New Yorkers each year to meet pressing needs in the community through volunteer service. Volunteers tutor children, feed the hungry, help adults develop job and language skills, revitalize community gardens, take homeless children on recreational outings, visit the elderly, provide coats to those who would go without, and make real differences every day in the lives of New Yorkers in need. For more information about New York Cares, visit


Ed Skyler / Silvia Alvarez   (212) 788-2958

Sara Walker   (New York Cares)
(212) 843-8086

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