Philadelphia kids pick out much needed winter coats

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More than 1,400 students arrived in buses and piled into the Pennsylvania Convention Center Tuesday morning. (WPVI)

More than 1,400 students arrived in buses and piled into the Pennsylvania Convention Center Tuesday morning.

This class trip was a pretty special, and an important one even though the temperature was in the 80s.

The children came to get a brand new winter coat to keep them bundled and warm through the winter.

"This is extremely important because so many of our children live in circumstances of poverty and things like coats become a challenge for some families," Dr. William Hite, Superintendent of the School District of Philadelphia, said.

For kids, always changing, always growing, a winter coat is a necessity.

But for many local families, it's a luxury

"This may be the only new coat or new piece of clothing these kids even get," Donald Franks of the Auto Dealers CARing for Kids Foundation.

That's why every year the Foundation buys tens of thousands of coats and brings just as many smiles to kids choosing the size and style that's a perfect fit.

175 local auto dealers work together to make winter a warm one for our area school kids in need.

On Tuesday, they pulled dozens of vehicles into the Pennsylvania Convention Center. The trunks were packed with brand new, warm coats because the need is real.

"There's over 37% of kids in Philadelphia in the impoverished group and everybody needs a new coat; it gets cold in the wintertime," Franks said.

This year, they're giving away more than 45,000 coats, bringing the total number soaring past 265,000 since they started the program in 2008.

These kids are now ready for whatever winter brings.
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