Call for coats to keep the homeless and vulnerable warm this winter

Brighton station is one of the drop-off points
Brighton station is one of the drop-off points

The Wrap Up Brighton & Hove coat collection campaign launches next week, with the public asked to donate their winter garments to the homeless and vulnerable.

Taking place in the city for the first time, the campaign is a call out to Sussex residents for their used, old or unwanted coats, which will be collected by volunteers and distributed to local charities that support vulnerable people including the elderly, homeless, women’s refuge, children and low-income families.

In partnership with charity HandsOn London, the inaugural Wrap Up Brighton & Hove is supported by Rotary Brighton and Hove and backed by American Express.

At Wrap Up Brighton & Hove, up to 130 American Express employees will be leafleting commuters and shoppers to inform them of the event and where and when coats will be collected, manning the collection points and sorting coats for distribution by local charities.

Public donation points will be situated at Brighton and Hove railway stations, churches and community centres across the city.

American Express will also be collecting coats from colleagues in its offices in Brighton and Burgess Hill.

In addition, students at the University of Sussex, the University of Brighton and BHASVIC can donate coats at nominated drop off points on campus.

Rotary Brighton and Hove will transport donated coats to a central storage point to be sorted by Amex volunteers. Coats and jackets of all sizes are gratefully received, although men’s heavy-duty weather-resistant coats and young children’s snowsuits are most needed.

Beverly Sawyers, vice president at American Express, said: “We’re asking the local community to rally round and get behind the first Wrap Up Brighton & Hove. Our colleagues in the capital have been volunteering at Wrap Up London since 2012, so we’ve seen first-hand the impact donating a spare coat can make.

"We were keen to bring the campaign here, given the growing numbers of vulnerable people in the city. We’re committed to backing the local community where we live and work and we’re hoping to build momentum year-on-year to give a helping hand to those who need it.”

Robert Griffiths, spokesperson for Rotary Brighton and Hove, said: “Sadly the number of people living in crisis here in Brighton is rising. We’re hoping to mobilise the power of the community to help those most in need ahead of the weather becoming colder. We’re a big-hearted city and we’re calling on the compassion and generosity of residents to care enough to gift a warm coat.”

Public donations of coats can made on November 11 to 13 at:

Brighton Train Station concourse - 7am to 11am

Hove Train Station concourse – 7am to 11am

Age UK, Prestonville Road Office, Brighton – 10am to 4pm

St George Church, St George’s Road, Brighton – 9.30am to 2.30pm

St John the Evangelist’s Church, Preston Village – 9am to 11am

Hangleton Community Centre, Hove – 9am to 9pm

Rushfields Plant Centre, Poynings – 10.00am to 4pm