National Clothesline
Coat drive goes viral in So. California
Thinking of Southern California doesn’t bring to mind people bundled up in warm coats, but apparently there are plenty of kids who need to do just that, judging from the response to this fall’s Coats for Kids project spearheaded by the South California Cleaners Association.
It was the twelfth year for the program which was hatched by Ray Rangwala, owner of Esteem Cleaners in Pasadena who has been able to get not only the cleaners in the area but also fellow Rotary Club members involved in the project. This year participating SCCA members cleaned more than 2,000 pounds of coats, placed them on hangers and brought them to the Salvation Army for distribution.
“There was so much need this year for the clothing, that we ran out of clothes to give away by 11 a.m.,” Rangwala said. 
The project keeps getting better every year, he said. This year a social media component was added with the help of Be Creative 360, a social marketing program for drycleaners, who designed, printed and distributed posters to cleaners and linked it on their Facebook pages.
“This made the project viral,” Rangwala said.
Thirty local schools from the Glendale unified School District, the Southern California Gas Company and the Glendale Memorial Hospital assisted in the collection this year.
Earlier this year, Rangwala’s efforts in chairing the drive earned him the Vocational Service Award from Rotary International.