Joining Mittens for Detroit to Keep Families Warm This Winter

Spread holiday cheer by giving back this season with your kids.

My son Jordan has an enormous heart. He is very empathetic and often worries about others. I try to remind him how fortunate he is and how we should help others that are less fortunate, but sometimes we get too busy to do anything philanthropic.

This holiday season, we decided to donate to Mittens for Detroit. It’s a nonprofit that purchases, collects and distributes new mittens and gloves to children, teens and adults in need in Detroit and other underserved communities.

If you’re looking for something to do with your child this winter, consider donating to this organization. They will be collecting mittens and gloves until Jan. 10, 2024. Here is what we did:

Purchase gloves and mittens 

While we were already out and about doing some holiday shopping at Target, I had Jordan grab his own basket and put in different sized mittens in the children’s sections. I figured kid’s sizes are harder to find than adult sizes, so we grabbed a bunch of child-sized gloves and toddler-sized gloves.

We paid for the gloves and kept them in the car. That way, we already had the mittens if we were near one of the drop off locations.

Dropping off the mittens

I looked beforehand at all of the Mittens for Detroit’s Community Collection Locations and found one near my house. This drop off location happened to be a Ford dealership. We went to drop them off and I let Jordan physically put them in the box. I think it really made him feel good that he was actually the one donating them into the box. I could have easily dropped the mittens off by myself while he was at school, but I wanted it to be his thing.

We walked out of the dealership and outside the door, he leaned over and gave me a big hug. It surprised me, because he didn’t say anything, he just did it. I know he was just feeling good that he is helping so many kids – some of the kids being around his own age – stay warm this winter with the gloves he donated.

A nice surprise

Photo credit: Kari Zaffarano

We started walking to the car and one of the salespeople opened the door and asked us to come back inside. We walked in and another woman who worked there came out and brought Jordan a model car to put together. She spoke directly to him about how much he is helping so many children this winter stay warm with the gloves he donated and thanked him for doing so. He was so grateful for the gesture from her and was so surprised. He told me he wasn’t expecting anything and just donating the gloves made him happy. He was extremely excited though and left with an even bigger smile!

Make it your own

Mittens for Detroit offers many options to give back. You can purchase gloves and mail them in if you do not want to go to an actual drop-off location. Another option is to purchase gloves on Amazon or another website and have them send to their address.

The only thing they ask is to make sure the gloves and mittens are warm and durable. Think quality, not quantity. If it’s not a pair you or your kids would use, then do not donate them. If you’re unsure, watch their video – A Hands On Guide for Choosing Mittens.


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Kari Zaffarano
Kari Zaffarano
Kari Zaffarano is a mom of one and Metro Parent's Audience Development Coordinator. She tracks down the best events every week and shares the inside scoop with families in print and online. She enjoys reading, traveling and exploring metro Detroit with her son.

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