Popular Warmth for Winter initiative to stay after outpouring of support

January 10, 2020   ·   0 Comments

By Brian Lockhart

An overwhelming response from the public has encouraged Orangeville resident Basia Knowlton to open her Warmth for the Winter clothesline once again on the front lawn of her Centre Street home.

Basia started the project a couple of years ago and has since placed warm clothing, free for the taking, on a clothesline in front of her house. 

The lawn is filled with coats, scarves, gloves, and mittens – pretty much everything someone would need for the cold winter months. 

Recently Basia announced the clothesline would be coming down and the winter wear no long available. She said vandalism and general disregard for her property caused her to make the decision to stop the project.

However, after announcing the clothing would long longer be available she received such a response from the public that has reconsidered.

“I’ve had an overwhelming response,” Basia said. “I announced I was taking it down because it was being abused. I have a daughter with special needs living with me and I was getting a little frightened,” she said of opening her door in the morning and finding clothes had been pulled down and strewn around the yard. 

“I finally decided I can’t do this and put it on Facebook. I said my line is coming down in a week so help yourself to what you need. I think I blew up the internet. Everyone asked me not to and said they would help. I’ve had a whole camera security system donated to me. I’ve had all kinds of donations. Just on the Orangeville Buy and Sell site I had 500 hits as well as so many comments.”

Basia blames just a handful of people who were doing the damage.

“I’ve found beer bottles, condoms, I found all kinds of stuff on my front lawn,” Basia said, “Then I went on Friday morning and all the bags had been ripped off the coats and thrown around my front yard.”

The line never actually came down as she had told people she would leave it up for a week.

Basia hopes the renewed interest in the clothesline as well as the added security cameras will keep vandals away and allow her to continue the project with minimal disruption.

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