ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (WIVB)– Bills Defensive Tackle Ed Oliver has never been through a Western New York winter, but he’s been warned.
“Buffalo’s a place I’ve heard has unbearable winters and I’d hate for a kid to have to walk outside in a blizzard or whatever kind of crazy weather we get up here. I haven’t experienced it. I really don’t know. But I’d hate to be without a coat,” Oliver said.
That’s why he’s doing what he can to help bring in donations for this year’s Coats 4 kids Campaign. He stopped by the collection event Saturday outside New Era Field, meeting fans who brought coats, boots, hats, gloves, and more.
“It just epitomizes the Bills Mafia and what the Bills Football Program is all about. It’s all about family, it’s all about one another, making sure one another’s straight,” Oliver said.
Coats 4 Kids can use that help, from the Bills Mafia and beyond. Colvin Cleaners cleaned and distributed 18,500 coats and other winter weather items last year alone!
“If you got a coat last year, chances are your kids have grown out by the time this year comes around, so the same people are coming, more and more people are hearing about it, they’re coming, so it just seems like the need gets bigger every single year,” said Chris Billoni, Colvin Cleaners vice president.
But western New Yorkers are rising to the challenge, donating more than 5,000 items to our live drive this month and offering donations all year round.
“We’re happy to do the cleaning and do the collecting, but if people don’t donate, then none of it matters, so to see everyone come together around a cause like this, and all of Western New York, I mean people from people Springville drive up for this thing, an hour away just to donate something and then go home, and all the suburbs, all the surrounding areas, the downtown, everywhere is donating to this, so it makes you feel proud of where you live and where you’re from,” Billoni said.
Donations are accepted all year round. Colvin Cleaners’ route customers can even have their donations picked up from their homes. You can drop off donations at Colvin Cleaners or one of more than 40 other participating business locations.
Distributions begin November 9. The first one will be at the knights of Columbus in Kenmore. Visit coats4kidswny.Org for more information.