Shelby Township, Sterling Heights and Utica joined with Grupo Antolin Shelby to help young children and families who were without warm clothes this winter by collecting new coats, hats, gloves and monetary donations.

Shelby Township, Sterling Heights and Utica joined with Grupo Antolin Shelby to help young children and families who were without warm clothes this winter by collecting new coats, hats, gloves and monetary donations.

Photo provided by the city of Utica


Communities collect money and coats for kids in need

By: Kara Szymanski | C&G Newspapers | Published January 21, 2019

MACOMB COUNTY — Three local communities came together in recent weeks to help children and families who were without warm clothes through a coat drive called Antolin Coats for Kids.

Grupo Antolin Shelby, which organized the drive with community leaders, is an automotive interior supplier. Partnering with Shelby Township, Sterling Heights, Utica and Utica Community Schools, it held the coat drive at different locations to collect new coats, hats, gloves and monetary donations.

Between the three communities, they collected a total of 1,383 coats and $6,100 in cash donations after starting the drive Nov. 19 and concluding it Jan. 4.

Utica Mayor Thom Dionne said he was very happy with the results from the community fundraiser.

“We were contacted by Antolin Shelby, who brought about the idea and decided this was something we would do to help those in the community who were in need,” he said.

Antolin Shelby picked up the donations from the locations and delivered them to Utica Community Schools.

The drop-off locations in Shelby Township included Antolin Shelby, Township Hall, the Police Department, the Shelby Township Library, the Burgess-Shadbush Nature Center and the Department of Public Works building.

Shelby Township officials also spoke about it many times during Board of Trustees meetings in the hope that residents would get involved.

In Sterling Heights, drop-off locations included City Hall, the public library, the Police Department, the Department of Public Works building, Fire Station No. 5 and the Parks and Recreation Department building.

Utica had drop-off locations at City Hall and at some of the schools.

“Under their (Antolin’s) enthusiasm, we were able to come up with the donations; Utica being smaller, we were excited. It is overwhelming. We didn’t expect the response to be so high. Pretty exciting, and it is going to get colder soon, so it’s perfect timing,” Dionne said.

Distribution is underway.

“It is way, really, past our expectations, and the coats have already started to make their way to the kids in need. We’re not waiting for a moment or a day. We have already started to distribute them,” said Supervisor Rick Stathakis at the Shelby Township Board of Trustees meeting Jan. 15.

“We will be distributing them until they are not needed anymore,” Stathakis said.

For more information, call Shelby Township at (586) 731-5100, Utica at (586) 739-1600 or Sterling Heights at (586) 446-2489.