Dean Jacobs hopes the public will make this winter a little warmer for kids in Macy.
Jacobs is a world traveler, author, photographer and speaker, who encourages people to follow their dreams. Each Thursday, the Fremont man does his inspirational work with students and staff at Omaha Nation Public School.
During a conversation with a staffer, Jacobs learned that several students don’t have winter coats.
So Jacobs has launched “Coats for Kids — a Campaign for Omaha Nation Public School Students in Macy.”
The public is encouraged to bring coats and place them in a large receiving container at Milady Coffeehouse, 105 E. Sixth St., in downtown Fremont.
Jacobs plans to start taking coats to Macy as he gets them.
“I will personally take all the coats to the school to help make sure they get where they are needed,” Jacobs said.
In particular, children’s sizes 10, 12, 14 and 18 are badly needed, but all sizes are helpful.
Jacobs said he’s been told that 50 coats would change the world for 50 kids.
Those donating coats are helping kids stay warm on cold Nebraska days.
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“It’s a challenging situation anyway and cold winter days without proper gear just makes more hurdle to jump,” Jacobs said.
Omaha Nation is a public school in Macy, which is the center of the tribal government for the Omaha, a federally recognized Midwestern Native American tribe. Macy is in Thurston County, the poorest county in the state of Nebraska.
“Coats for Kids is something I came up with to find a solution for a challenge for these kids I have a connection with,” Jacobs said. “These are amazing kids who have incredible potential and possibilities and it’s my passion to make sure kids follow their dreams.”
Jacobs knows it’s important to provide students with opportunities.
“We should never let a jacket stand in the way of a kid getting an education,” Jacobs said.
Jacobs appreciates Milady’s willingness to receive the coats.
“They gracious enough to get on board with the idea,” he said. “They love the idea, actually.”
The receiving container is marked with a sign that reads: “Coats for Kids! A Campaign for Omaha Nation Public School students in Macy, NE.”
Those who’d rather donate funds may send a check to: Dean Jacobs, P.O. Box 911, Fremont, NE 68026. Make the check out to: Travel for Life Foundation.
Donors also may send funds to Jacobs via PayPal or Venmo. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org
“If people are moved to participate with this, I’m very grateful,” Jacobs said.
Jacobs has posted the project on his Facebook page and is asking friends to share it on theirs. He’s begun seeing response.
“I’m already humbled and grateful for how people are already responding; It gives me hope in humanity,” he said. “I think things like this help remind us that we need each other and that we can make the world better by watching out for each other.”
He notes something else.
“This isn’t going to save the world, but it’s going to help make the world better for some kids,” Jacobs said. “This is going to reduce the suffering for people who’ve already suffered enough.”