ELIZABETH – Elizabeth Public School students who are in need of a warm coat this winter will be receiving one thanks to a collaborative effort between the New Jersey State Troopers and Elizabeth Public Schools’ administrators. In total, 171 coats will be distributed to students throughout the school district.
Seventy-four winter coats were purchased through the generosity of the Marshall C. Brown Chapter of the National Black State Trooper Coalition of the NJ State Police. The Coalition has been running the coat drive in the cities of Newark, Irvington, Camden, and Trenton for several years. Sgt. First Class Carla Thomas, a member of the coalition, along with Trooper Reinaldo Cruz, Jr., a former teacher in the Elizabeth Public Schools, saw a need and added Elizabeth to their annual coat drive. The coalition uses donations from State Troopers, community members, local faith groups, and local businesses.
Elizabeth’s administrators donated funds to purchase the remaining 97 coats needed to furnish every student in need with a coat. The New Jersey State Troopers worked with the Elizabeth Public Schools’ guidance counselors and social workers to identify those students most in need.
Winter coats were purchased at a substantial discount from KidsTown USA and Old Navy in the Jersey Gardens Mall, and Holmdel. KidsTown USA also donated a pair of gloves with each coat.
Superintendent of Schools Pablo Muñoz said, “When district administrators became aware that there were still coats needed for students, they immediately reacted by donating money to ensure every child would get a warm winter coat. I would like to thank the NJ State Police, KidsTown USA, Old Navy and the Elizabeth Public Schools team members for their outpouring of love.”
On Friday, Jan. 13, representatives of the New Jersey State Troopers joined representatives from Elizabeth Public Schools in distributing the coats to students at their respective schools.
“It is wonderful to see the greater community, including our fine State Troopers, working together with our Elizabeth Public Schools’ team members to ensure that the children of Elizabeth have the items necessary to live and learn and reach their potential,” commented Board Member Francisco González.
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