MERIDEN — The main hallway of the Max E. Muravnick Senior Center was full of seniors waiting in line on Friday to pick out items collected during the center’s annual coat drive.
Natalie Gill, the center’s social services worker, has run the drive for five years with other staff members, collecting donations and setting up the event.
“We’ve actually notified people in the community about a month ago and it didn’t take very long for people to gather up and give us the coats and outerwear and the accessories,” Gill said. “So it was a good turnout.”
Gill said that they were able to collect about 200 coats to give away to needy seniors.
“Best Cleaners in Berlin actually was a big contributor,” she said. “We were able to contact and get a huge amount of coats through them and just people in the community.”
The drive also offered hats, scarves and blankets.
“Some churches gathered some coats and during the winter, we had a few ladies who knitted a lot of scarves and hats and blankets, which were huge,” Gill said.
The West Main Street senior center offers many different events and programs, but the coat drive and giveaway remains popular and successful, according to Senior Center Director Rick Liegl.
“(Gill) assists seniors throughout the year in the city of Meriden with social service programs related to Medicare, Medicaid and things like renters rebate and a myriad of assistance programs,” Liegl said. “She started coordinating this (coat drive) a few years back and it’s been very successful.
“We are probably going to have about 100 or so people come through,” he added. “They are picking up quality coats.”
Seniors who came to pick out a coat appreciated the community’s generosity
“People are very grateful,” Gill said.