Realtors collecting coats for cold winter. (THE NEWS/files)

Maple Ridge realtors collecting winter gear

Blanket Drive under way this week

It’s shaping up to be another miserable winter, so local realtors are continuing their Realtors Care Blanket Drive tradition of collecting warm clothes and blankets to the needy.

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver this week is asking for donations of new, or gently used blankets, sleeping bags, coats, hats, scarves and ponchos.They’re also looking for contributions of new socks and underwear.

Once collected, the items will be trucked down to the Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows Christmas Hamper Society near Planet Ice where they’ll be added to the gifts available at the Rudolph’s Recycle Gift Shoppe. That takes place in one of the barns on the Albion fairgrounds. The barn is filled with items ranging from bedding to clothing and footwear to books and holiday decor and more. Registered Christmas Hamper society families can shop there for free.

The goal is to help low-income families, said Jewel Yourchek.

Any items that are not suitable for gift giving will go to other agencies.

The Blanket Drive started 23 years ago, and has helped more than 300,000 people in Metro Vancouver.

The drive only runs however from this Tuesday, Nov. 14 to 21, so people have this week to get in their donations.

This year, according to the Metro Vancouver 2017 Homeless Count, there’s a 30-per-cent increase in the number of homeless people in the region, compared to three years ago. In Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows, there’s been almost a 50-per-cent jump in that time period, according to the stats.

• People in Pitt Meadows and Maple Ridge who want to help out Blanket Drive, can take their donations to:

Coldwell Banker Tri-Tel Realty, 22519 Dewdney Trunk Rd., 604-467-9300

Keller Williams Elite Realty, 550-20395 Lougheed Hwy., 604-465-0030

Macdonald Realty Ltd., 6-20691 Lougheed Hwy., 604-467-3871

Royal LePage-Brookside Realty, 11933 224th St., 604-467-5000

RE/MAX Lifestyles Realty 22308 Dewdney Trunk Rd., 604-466-2838

RE/MAX Results Realty, 20842 Lougheed Hwy., 604-467-0811

Sutton Group-1st West Realty, 201-21755 Lougheed Hwy., 604-467-3001

They can also call Peter Vanderlee at 604-880-3275 who can stop by and collect the donations.

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