Last week push to donate coats to Operation Liberty Hill

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By Christian Betancourt

Although temperatures remain warm, Operation Liberty Hill and the Liberty Hill Independent School District Police Department hope those in the community will start thinking about winter and donate coats for those in need.
Coat donations will be accepted through Sept. 30 at barrels posted at each campus.

“We usually just blast it on social media, and we usually wait until later in the fall,” said Operation Liberty Hill Executive Director Susan Baker. “So many things start happening in October, November, and December. We wanted to start something we could do right now to prepare for then. It might be 100 degrees today, but in eight weeks, we’re going to be wearing coats.”

LHISD Police Chief Sharif Mezayek said his department wanted to team up with OLH to help the community with the coat drive as they do with food drives.

“We feel there are a lot of people that need our help right now,” he said. “With the pandemic and them being out of work, people are trying to get caught up.”

Last year OLH was able to provide about 200 coats for children. Baker hopes the partnership with LHISD will allow them to serve a more significant part of the need in the community.

“There are so many kids that need coats,” she said. “Not just heavy coats, but a light jacket. We’re hoping this will really bring a lot of coats for the kids. I’d like to see at least 1,000 (coats). It would be great if we could get 1,000 coats.”

Mezayek believes the community is always eager to help and hopes they will accomplish the set goal.

“Liberty Hill is a very tight-knit community, and I think that is what makes it special,” he said. “It’s always important to keep in mind that we need to help each other out. It makes a better community.”

Baker said OLH serves about 300 families in the area and hopes they can get enough coats to distribute to each family member in need.

“There’s a lot of families in this community that can’t afford to buy coats for their children every year,” she said. “It’s not like with adults that can wear the same coats year after year. Hopefully, it will encourage people to give us their gently used coats or buy a new coat when they go to the store.”

Mezayek said that if community members want to donate coats but don’t want to go into the schools, someone from LHISD PD can pick up donations. Call (512) 260-5532. Monetary donations are accepted at https://operationlh.org.

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