Winter cold brings out the warmth

THE warmth of human kindness is keeping the winter cold at bay.

Large numbers of Coffs Coast locals are opening their hearts to the plight of homeless people and others in need, responding to a plea from local charities for donations of blankets and warm clothing.

"The response has been phenomenal," co-ordinator for LifeHouse Care, Carol Sleep, said.

"We've had people donate all sorts of thing such as slippers, blankets, and good woollen jumpers when this happens; it gives you the spark to keep going at the job."

In a show of incredible generosity, Boambee naturopath Gary Samer donated 10 brand new sleeping bags to the Coffs Harbour Life House Care Bargain Centre.

"I read the story in the Advocate (on July 17) and couldn't sleep, thinking 'here I am in my warm house while there are people sleeping on the beach without blankets in two degree temperatures'," Gary said.

"When I woke up the next morning I emailed a couple of sleeping bag manufacturers to see if they would help. I got a wonderful response."

After showing Roman Camping and OZtrail camping supplies the story in the Advocate, both of the manufacturers pitched in by donating sleeping bags.

"I offered to buy them at cost price. The next thing I knew, Roman donated 10, and 12 more are on their way from OZtrail.

"Neither asked for any money. Then I contacted the local manager of Fastway couriers, and they offered to courier them for free."

Gary has been so inspired by the goodwill of the companies he has contacted, he said he is planning to appeal for more sleeping bags and tents.

"Anything I can do to help out I'm on a roll," he said.

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