Since 2007, the School of Natural Resources has gathered winter coats, warm gloves, pieces of clothing and monetary donations for students at Clinton Elementary, just up the street from Hardin Hall on 33rd Street.
The school, where 95 percent of its 500 students qualify for free- or reduced-price lunch, sees a higher percentage of families living in poverty than much of Lincoln. It sees families who are struggling to make ends meet and who are struggling to put food on the table.
This year, Linda Kern, family care coordinator for the elementary school, said the needs are even greater than in years past.
With an anonymous donor lined up who will match up to $1,000 in cash donations, SNR’s annual Coats for Clinton Drive is undergoing a transformation in an effort to meet that increased need.
Meet the new and improved donation campaign: Caring for Clinton, which runs through Dec. 6. Donations will be collected in the Hardin Hall main lobby.
Cash for Clinton
By maximizing this year’s cash donations during the drive, SNR will effectively to be able to double cash donations to Clinton Elementary. Last year, SNR collected $1,150 in cash, not including donated gift cards to SuperSaver, Hy-Vee, Casey’s or Quick-Shop.
If donations match last year’s, SNR could hand over more than $2,000 to the elementary school, allowing Kern to buy needed supplies for families or to be passed on to families based on need.
Monetary donations can be made at the Nebraska Maps & More Store in Hardin Hall. Checks should be written out to "Foundation for Lincoln Public Schools" with "Clinton Emergency Fund" on the ledger line.
Donors can keep tabs on the current cash donation amount throughout the course of our campaign by visiting the Caring for Clinton webpage. In the style of Salvation Army, we’ll raise the thermometer’s mercury after a cash count each Monday.
Coats & Clothing for Clinton
Coat and clothing needs are still high among students at Clinton. Though Kern said matching hat and glove sets are always welcome, the office has noted the highest needs in these areas:
- Boys’ and girls’ coats in sizes 6 to 8 and 14 to 16.
- Boys’ jeans in sizes 6, 8 and 10.
- Girls’ jeans or leggings in sizes 6-6x, 7-8, 10-12, and 14-16.
- Boys’ and girls’ sweatshirts or sweaters in sizes small, medium and large.
- Boys’ undergarments in sizes 4 to 16.
- Girls’ undergarments in sizes 10-12 and 14-16.
Gently used items will be accepted.
Also on the need list are toiletries, including:
- Body lotion
- Detergent (gallon jugs)
- Tampons and/or pads
- Diapers (size 3 to 6)
- Toilet paper
The toiletries are handed out in bags to families who are part of the Food Market program, a collaboration between the school and the Food Bank of Lincoln to provide families with enough food for nights and weekends.
Those interested also are welcome to donation $10 to $20 gift cards for SuperSaver, Hy-Vee or Casey’s and Quik-Shop.
The annual SNR collection drive was organized for the first time in 2007 by former recruiter Jennifer Aerni and the SNR Community Engagement Committee; it has continued annually since.
“Every year SNR employees and students continue to contribute generously to Coats for Clinton,” said Dee Ebbeka, who orchestrates the donation drive along with the Community Engagement Committee. “I think that reflects their belief in the activity and the help it gives to our neighborhood families.”
Shawna Richter-Ryerson, Natural Resources