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Operation Cover Up: Collecting Coats for Kids

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Posted at 2:41 PM, Dec 07, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-08 07:34:12-05

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — While winters in South Texas can be mild, there are times when the cold weather really hits.

Think of February 2021 when we had a hard winter freeze. For some families who live on limited incomes, buying a coat or a jacket isn't so easy.

That's why some caring young girls are doing something about it with Operation Cover Up.

It started with a social media post among friends.

Roopa Bindingdavle, founder of Operation Cover Up, says "one of the things we recognized is when we were in elementary school that not everyone had a jacket."

As children, Roopa and her friends recognized the need, and in 2015 they did something about it.

Over the years, 3,000 coats have been collected along with $5,000 to buy new coats. Operation Cover Up has turned all of that over to Communities in Schools, who distributes what they collect to students in need in CCISD.

"It means a lot for the kids because sometimes they don't like to ask for things but they know that they can come in there if they ever need anything and we have it for them," said Nelda Canales, representative for Communities in Schools at Ray High school.

"One year it got really really cold, and I had a line of students" she adds.

Communities in Schools does a little bit of everything. They provide academic assistance, behavioral assistance, credit recovery for attendance, tutoring, hygiene products, school supplies; "whatever they need" Canales says.

Leela Bindignavele is taking over what her sister Roopa and her friends started. Roopa and her friends are now seniors at Ray High school and are graduating.

"It just makes me so happy and proud of the people that I'm around" says Leela.

Leela is also using social media to get the word out, ready to take over.

"I think it's going to be a little bit of work but I think that it's definitely going to be worth it," she says.

If you have a new or gently used jacket for any age, you can drop them off at three different sites.

  • Ray High School
    (During school hours)
  • Windsor Park Elementary
    (During school hours)

You can drop off donations in a box set up right inside the entrance.

  • Dr. Vijay Bindignavele's office
    (5642 Esplanade Dr. in Corpus Christi)

Operation Cover Up will wrap up on January 15, 2021.