Auto Repair And Maintenance Shops Launch Annual Snug Hugs For Kids™ Winter Clothing Drive

Thursday, October 22, 2009

People encouraged to donate new and like-new clothing for cause

An estimated 39 percent of children living in the U.S. come from families with incomes below the poverty level, according to the National Center for Children in Poverty. Each year, thousands of these children face blustery, cold winters without coats, boots, or even hats and gloves. But, people can lend a helping hand this year by participating in Merlin's Snug Hugs for Kids™ Winter Clothing Drive. Merlin 200,000 Mile Shops are encouraging individuals and groups to donate new and like-new children's winter outerwear and clothing for the annual drive. Winter items that are needed most include new and like-new coats, boots, hats, mittens, gloves, scarves, sweaters, pants, and socks sized to fit children ages newborn to eighteen years old. Donations can be dropped off from November 1st through December 9th at Merlin 200,000 Mile Shops locations. Now in its 18th year, Snug Hugs for Kids™ has collected and delivered more than 180 tons of usable clothing which benefits Merlin's charity partner, Children's Home + Aid. "This initiative is very near and dear to our hearts, and each year we are impressed by the donations from individuals and groups throughout the nation," said Frank Smola, president of the Merlin 200,000 Mile Shops chain. "For many children, these donations may determine whether or not they will have the proper clothing this winter, and with the public's generous donations, we can help these kids stay warm throughout the coldest months." On December 10, Merlin franchisees, employees, and corporate staff will deliver the clothing to strategically located Children's Home + Aid Family Centers in Illinois and to their affiliates in Wisconsin. Since 1883, Children's Home + Aid has been a leader in responding to the changing needs of disadvantaged children and families in Illinois, and they are recognized as a leading provider of quality programs and services to children and families in need. More information about Children's Home + Aid can be found at www.childrenshomeandaid.org.

Through the flagship Snug Hugs for Kids™ drive, Merlin 200,000 Mile Shops also conduct a subsidiary program called Kids Helping Kids™. This program encourages Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, and community youth groups to collect winter clothing as a group for their less fortunate peers with the option of earning a collectible badge. In addition, crafters lend a helping hand through another subsidiary program called the Crochet & Knit-A-Thon™, where people collectively knit and crochet winter clothing. For more information about Snug Hugs for Kids™ and to find a list of Merlin 200,000 Mile Shops, please visit www.merlins.com.

About Merlin 200,000 Mile Shops Merlin 200,000 Mile Shops offer a neighborhood approach to automotive service. THE DRIVE FOR 200,000, Merlin's EASY AND AFFORDABLE maintenance program, supports vehicle owners hundreds of thousands of miles beyond the usual manufacturer's warranty period and has positioned Merlin as the leader in vehicle longevity. Founded in 1975, Merlin is headquartered in St. Charles, Illinois, and operates shops in four states.

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Merlin 200,000 Mile Shops
3815 E Main St. Unit D
St. Charles, IL

Phone: (630)208-9907 ext. 122
Toll Free: (800)652-9900
Fax: (630)208-8601

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