Local program is in the 11th year of helping to keep children warm
ALLEGANY COUNTY, MARYLAND (September 30, 2011) — In Allegany County, winter comes early — and without warm coats, school-aged children are particularly vulnerable to the low temperatures and biting winds. For the past 11 years, the Allegany County Department of Social Services’ (DSS) “Safe and Snug” Program has sought to address this need by providing new coats, hats and gloves for local children in need.
“Often, the coat we provide is the first new coat a child has ever owned,” said Richard Paulman, director of the Allegany County Department of Social Services. “This program provides an opportunity for our community to come together to help our children. With help from community partners like Susquehanna Bank, we’ve had a lot of success in recent years.”
Another partner in this effort is the Allegany County Board of Education, who encourages applications for the program through its local schools and helps to identify eligible children. Allegany County schools began accepting applications for the program on September 21 and will continue through November 9.
Monetary donations — as well as donations of new coats, hats and gloves — are made by various community organizations and private citizens. To make a donation, individuals should visit their local Allegany County Department of Social Services office or Susquehanna Bank location, which are serving as collection sites.
In 2009, the Allegany County DSS distributed 500 coats to area children; in 2010, that number increased by 20% to 600 area children — representing more than 1,000 children served in just two years. Program organizers hope to increase the number again this year, noting that children may need additional assistance as they outgrow coats received in previous years.
Individuals may make monetary donations by mailing them to the:
Allegany County Department of Social Services
1 Frederick Street
Cumberland, MD 21502
Please indicate “Safe and Snug” in the memo section of the check to ensure your donation is properly allocated.
The Maryland Department of Human Resources (DHR) is the state’s primary social service provider, serving over one million people annually. The Department, through its 24 local departments of social services, aggressively pursues opportunities to assist people in economic need, provide preventive services, and protect vulnerable children and adults in each of Maryland’s 24 counties. Allegany County DSS is a field office of the Maryland Department of Human Resources.