CHICAGO (October 1, 2020, 10 AM) — The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated challenges for the already vulnerable, which will grow even more apparent as winter approaches. Cradles to Crayons Chicago (C2C)—a nonprofit organization that provides children from birth through age 12 living in homeless or low-income situations with the essential items they need to thrive—aims to provide 37,000 Chicagoland kids with new and like-new winter coats, boots, hats, gloves and scarves, warm clothes and hygiene items as part of its “Gear Up for Winter” initiative.

C2C will hold its first collection drive on Sunday, October 25, 10 am – 1 pm, for new and gently-used items at six contactless donation sites throughout the Chicagoland area, including:

  • Logan Square – The Giving Factory (4141 W. George)
  • Woodlawn – South Side YMCA (6340 S. Stony Island)
  • Buffalo Grove, IL – Bank of America (1300 N. Arlington Rd.)
  • Highwood, IL – Highwood Public Library (102 Highwood Ave.)
  • La Grange Park, IL – La Grange Park Public Library (555 N. La Grange Rd.)
  • Naperville, IL – Bank of America (1301 E. Ogden Ave.)

Additional collection dates will be announced at a later date. However, items can be dropped off at locations through March 2021 and will be distributed to children through C2C’s network of service partners. C2C has taken extra precautions to safely continue to meet the needs of the community, including quarantining donations before processing, increased sanitizations, and more. Full donation guidelines can be found here.

“COVID-19 has unmasked existing economic disparities, but it also underscores the power of collaboration and community. We’re calling on our network of neighbors, supporters, and partners to come together to support our children as winter approaches,” said Shoshana Buchholz-Miller, Executive Director of Cradles to Crayons Chicago. “Many families have been displaced due to the pandemic, and C2C continues to provide essential items families need to thrive, but we cannot do it alone.”  

In addition to providing kids with the necessary winter gear, C2C will continue to supply families with diapers and essential hygiene items as part of its ongoing COVID-19 relief support. For more information about “Gear Up for Winter,” visit, cradlestocrayons.org/chicago/gufw2020/

About Cradles to Crayons

Cradles to Crayons launched in Boston in 2002 and currently has operations in Boston, Philadelphia, and Chicago. We provide children, from birth through age 12, living in homeless or low-income situations with the essential items they need to thrive—at home, at school, and at play. We supply these items, free of charge, by engaging and connecting communities. Cradles to Crayons collects new and high-quality used children’s goods and engages thousands of youth and adults in volunteer activities each year to serve under-resourced children with the essentials.