Coat giveaway: Hundreds of local men, women and children now have a warm coat for the cold months ahead. The Society of St. Vincent de Paul collected donated coats, hats, gloves, scarves and boots for a free distribution that was held Saturday. The 13th Annual Free Coat Giveaway was held this year at the St. Peter Catholic Church parish gym, 2706 Leavenworth St. More than 4,000 coats were given away.
Mission needs volunteers: The Open Door Mission is expecting to distribute over 5,000 Turkey ‘N’ Fixin boxes — each filled with a turkey and food to prepare a Thanksgiving Day meal — this season. Volunteers are sought to deliver the boxes on Nov. 18. On Saturday, families registered to receive a Turkey ‘N’ Fixin’s box through the mission’s Drumstick on Wheels Program. For more information about the program, including how to assist with deliveries, contact the mission at www.opendoormission.org.
NEST contributions: Fifteen Nebraska youth — including Ruth Mansour, Elena Miranda, Kara Stricklin and Jackson Evans, all of Omaha, and Cole Vredeveld of Bennington — each received $529 in a NEST 529 College Savings account on Oct. 18 at the Nebraska State Capitol in Lincoln. NEST is a State of Nebraska college savings program that provides savings accounts and plans to help make college more affordable. The youth completed summer reading programs at their local libraries. For more information, go to NEST529.com.
Good Apple awards: Julie Kalkowski of Omaha was awarded the Nebraska Appleseed Jim Wolf Equal Justice Award on Oct. 19. Kalkowski was selected for her career-long contributions to serving low-income families, fighting against poverty and connecting people to financial resources. She has served on the United Way Worldwide National Task Force and the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s consumer advisory board. She is executive director of Creighton’s Financial Hope Collaborative, which combines policy and programming to increase financial literacy and social mobility for families in Omaha.
Children’s Miracle Network dance: Creighton students raised more than $68,000 at its third annual Children’s Miracle Network Dance Marathon on Oct. 28. Proceeds from the 12-hour event to raise awareness of hospitalized children affected by pediatric illness go to Children’s Hospital & Medical Center in Omaha.
Red Cross blood drive: The American Red Cross will host a blood drive event today at Fontenelle Forest, 1111 Bellevue Blvd. North in Bellevue. Donate blood from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and receive free admission to the forest, including its raptor refuge, art gallery and trails. For more information, go to fontenelleforest.org.
Autism Night: Center for Autism and Related Disorders will host Autism Night on Tuesday at GO! Kids’ Gym, 4223 S. 120th St. The 6 to 8 p.m. event is for families that are affected by autism spectrum disorder and is open to children 8 and younger. Cost is $9 per child and free for children 2 and younger with a paid sibling.
Bellevue University hosts: Bellevue University is looking for families to host international students this Thanksgiving. Families are asked to sponsor two BU students. Those interested should contact Julie Verebely, BU International Student Experience specialist, at email@example.com.