About Us

Paul and Cheryl Darby - Coats for Kids founders in Alexandria VAThe Coats for Kids Foundation was established in January 2004 as a public, charitable foundation by Paul and Cheryl Darby of Alexandria, VA. It received IRS recognition as a 501(c)(3) in March 2004. The Coats for Kids Foundation mission is “to ensure that every child who needs a winter coat receives a new one.”

The growth of Coats For Kids Foundation became more than the Darby’s were able to handle on their own. Beginning in 2011, Coats For Kids Foundation programs continue as a service of Operation Warm. Operation Warm, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization (EIN 38-3663310) formed in November 2002 operates in 47 states.

Our vision remains unchanged. With your generosity, we will continue to provide clothing, specifically new winter coats to children in need.

CFK distinguishes itself from other very worthwhile and commendable programs by:

  • Only distributing new winter coats
  • Including a pair of new gloves and a new winter hat, when they are available, and
  • Accepting requests for coats and delivering them all winter long—from October through the end of March.  Most coat giving events only operate between Thanksgiving and Christmas.

If you have “gently used” coats, as they are termed, please contact the Salvation Army, Goodwill, or other local entity to donate them.  The Coats for Kids Foundation only distributes new coats.

Why New Coats?

Giving a child a new coat positively impacts that child’s self-esteem and self-worth.  We believe—and school principals, nurses, and social workers agree—that the impact on kids that receive coats from CFK is dramatic, as evidenced by heads held high, smiles, and fewer missed days of school because of illness.

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Distribution

Our delivery of coats is done through schools, county or local social service agencies, churches/synagogues, and through other non-profit organizations that work with at-risk and disadvantaged children.

More Information

  • Do you offer contribution receipts?

    We provide contribution receipts for donations from individuals, businesses, and groups. All donations of funding, in-kind clothing (e.g. coats, hats, gloves), and services (e.g. transportation) receive a receipt for tax purposes.

  • Who are your coat suppliers?

    Our primary supply source today is through our partnership with Operation Warm.

  • What are your coat sizes?

    Coat sizes range from 4T – 18/20 and larger kids in adult sizes M and L are generally available.

  • What is your coat delivery area?

    The Coats For Kids Foundation program was founded in Alexandria, Virginia. Together with Operation Warm, the program has expanded across the U.S. We deliver nationwide, provided that there is local fundraising to underwrite the cost the coat program.

  • Where do your donations go?

    Donations are used to provide brand-new winter coats to needy children and for other philanthropic endeavors and costs supporting the charitable giving program.  Annually, Operation Warm is audited and files Form 990 with the Internal Revenue Service.

  • How can I help?

    Coats for Kids and Operation Warm are constantly in need of support for the more than 15 million children living in poverty within the United States. Visit OperationWarm.org to learn how you can get involved.