Steiner Collects Koats4Kids

With winter approaching, some of the most vulnerable in our society — children and young people — could use a little help to stay warm and Steiner Electric, the Salvation Army and the Rockford community once again stepped up to help area children in need.

A Koats4Kids hut outside Steiner Electric’s Rockford facility.

For the 16th year, Steiner Electric partnered with the Salvation Army for its annual Koats4Kids drive. Steiner is pivotal in collecting and distributing cold-weather clothing to children in Rockford and the surrounding areas who may otherwise go without during the cold winter months.

“Contributing to this cause is a no-brainer,” says Jeff Nagel, Rockford Distribution Center Manager. “The coats collected this year will be used this year to help children who otherwise might not have a warm coat. It is hard to think of a more worthy cause.”

Nagel points to one of Steiner’s employees who rarely takes credit for his efforts, but gives his time, and carpentry expertise, to this cause. Traffic Supervisor Gene Bullock has been supporting the drive for 16 years, primarily through the construction of sturdy, wooden collection huts.

“Steiner got involved and all of a sudden we needed solid huts to keep the donated clothes dry and clean,” says Bullock. “That is how I started helping this cause. It is a way to give back to the community. With everything going on in the world it is easy to think about other things, but the children have got to stay warm. It is one of life’s simplest human needs. ”

Bullock constructs the tall, wooden huts with spring-hinged doors for easy access. They are built directly on a pallet so that a Steiner crew using a pallet jack and company truck can move them where needed.

Steiner provides all the transportation for the delivery and collection of the huts and barrels to and from 35 donation sites.

Nagel says that donations of the following items are always needed:

  • Coats
  • Hats
  • Mittens
  • Scarves
  • Snow Pants
  • Boots

Donated items must be in good wearable condition, clean, and not have any holes or stains. Adult sizes are accepted as many kids wear them.

Items donated at Steiner’s Will-Call Counters were transferred back to Steiner’s Rockford facility and then transferred en masse to the Salvation Army.

If you’d like to contribute, it is not too late to help.  The Koats4Kids Campaign runs through Oct. 21, and you can donate directly to the Salvation Army’s donation page by clicking here.

Koats for Kids Coat Drive
In 2016, Steiner Electric donated the following items to the Koats for Kids clothing drive.
 124 coats
 35 hats
 10 pairs of gloves/mittens
 6 scarves
 3 pairs of snow pants
 4 pairs of snow boots