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posted: 12/4/2013 1:19 PM

Algonquin-Lake in the Hills firefighters raising money for kids' coats

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The firefighters in the Algonquin-Lake in the Hills Fire Protection District invite you to help them secure new, American-made winter coats for needy, at-risk children. The firefighters within International Association of Fire Fighters Local 3985, are spearheading this initiative, called "Firefighters Coats For Kids" and have joined forces with Operation Warm, a national nonprofit foundation whose mission is finding new coats for children. Here's how you can help.

The goal is to preserve American jobs while fighting the effects of childhood poverty. Every $32 donation you make to the union will buy a coat for a needy child in Algonquin or Lake in the Hills. The union's goal is to raise at least $1,000, enough to buy coats for more than 30 children.

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"When we're not responding to 911 emergencies, we find other ways to serve those who need us in the community," Firefighter Kevin Raether said in a statement. "Keeping these children warm and safe throughout the winter is the least we can do."

Donations will be accepted all winter long. If you'd like to help, visit www.operationwarm.org/ALH or mail a check to: 1010 W. Algonquin Rd., Lake in the Hills, IL 60156, Attn: Kevin Raether. Make your donation payable to IAFF Local 3985 and write FFCFK on the memo line.

Fighting the holiday blues: Zion United Methodist Church in Hampshire will hold a two-part mental health initiative to combat the feelings emotional issues that sometimes intensify around the holidays.

Linda Gehringer, a mental health aide, will lead the presentation on "Living with Depression" at 7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 12, at the church, 157 West Jefferson Ave.

A week later, the Rev. Diana K. Otterbacher, trained as a Caring Connector, will lead the presentation on "Living with Bi-Polar Disorder." at 7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 19, also at the church. Both presentations will include Bible readings and prayer.

The goal is to take the stigma out of mental health issues and offer support and understanding for people who face mental health challenges and for their families. For more information, call the church at (847) 683-2430 or visit www.zionunitedmethodistchurchofhampshire.com.

• Lenore T. Adkins covers Community Unit District 300, Algonquin, Carpentersville, the Dundees, Hampshire, Sleepy Hollow and Grafton Township. To reach her, send an email to ladkins@dailyherald.com or call (847) 608-2725.

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