Shelter from the elements, like food and clean water, is a basic need.

Facts About The Need For Warmth

Due to the economic crisis created by the COVID-19 pandemic, the poverty rate in 2020 increased for the first time in 5 years. Currently, 37 million, or 11% of all Americans are living in poverty and struggling to afford basic necessities.

Cold weather makes the body work harder, putting stress on the heart to ensure the body stays warm. (3)

Children are unable to regulate their body temperatures as adults do. They can quickly develop hypothermia without protection from the cold. (2)

Victims of hypothermia are often: older adults with inadequate food, clothing, or heating, children and babies, and those who remain outdoors for long periods. (10)

A 2015 study found up to a 31% increase in heart attacks in the coldest months of the year compared with the warmest. (4)

Exposure to cold predisposes people, especially children, to infections like pneumonia. (2)

Who needs a coat?

1 in 6 children

1 in 6 children in America is living in poverty. Poverty in children increased from 14.4 in 2019 to 16.1% in 2020. (7)

The National Center for Homeless Education reports that 1.5 million students enrolled in public school districts experienced homelessness during the course of the 2016-2017 school year. (9)

7.3 Million Families

7.3 million families are living in poverty. For poor families and individuals, the winter months are more expensive and a present a bigger strain on their budget. (5) Poverty for families increased by more than 4% because of the pandemic. (8) Families living in poverty are at greater risk of becoming homeless. (9)

1.5 million Veterans

1.5 million Veterans are living in poverty. The poverty rate of veterans is nearing 7% and growing each year. (6) Additionally, Veterans are often faced with many obstacles when they return to civilian life that put them at risk for homelessness including difficulties finding affordable housing and earning a livable income. (9)

25 million Seniors

25 million seniors are living in poverty. Many seniors do not have enough income and money saved to pay for a safe and stable place to live and other necessities such as food, utilities, and medication. (5)

People Experiencing Homelessness

According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, 326,000 people were experiencing homelessness in the U.S. on a single night in 2021. However, the numbers of people experiencing homelessness are most likely much higher than reported. (9)


1: (2016) PLOS ONE 2015
2: Troullos, E. Baird, L. Jayawardena,S. (2014) Common Cold Symptoms in Children. Journal of Medical Internet Research. 12
3: Cool Antarctica. 2018. Cold Weather and Health – How do cold temperatures affect health and well being? – The dangers of cold.
4: Harrar; Roberts. 2018. Why the Risk of Heart Attack Rise in Winter. Consumer Reports.
5: SEMEGA, J; KOLLAR, M; CREAMER, J, and MOHANTY, A. 2019. Income and Poverty in the United States: 2018. United States Census Bureau.
6. 2015. Veteran Poverty Trends. United States Department of Veteran Affairs.
7. Income and Poverty in the United States: 2020. United States Census Bureau.
8. Statista. Number of families living below the poverty line in the U.S. from 1990 to 2020. 2022
9. Invisible People. Number of People Homeless in America.
10. The CDC. Winter Weather.