Project Heart donates coats, socks to homeless

On Dec. 21, 13 teens and six adults from Ridgefield’s Project Heart set off to New York City to distribute food, clothes and some holiday cheer to the homeless on the streets of New York. Project Heart teamed up with the nonprofit organization Midnight Run ( to coordinate the event.

Several weeks before, Project Heart members solicited donations from residents that they could bring down to the homeless.

“We collected close to 50 coats, 100 pairs of socks and long johns, and assorted clothes,” said Brenner LeCompte, one of the Ridgefield organizers. “By the end of the night it was all gone.”

Project Heart gathered at St. Mary Church on Dec. 21 to sort all the donations, make 150 sandwiches, prepare cookies, soup and coffee. They then headed down to the city to meet groups of homeless men and women gathered at three separate locations.

According to Brenner, the group served close to 75 people Friday night between the three stops. The teens were instrumental in distributing the clothes, coats, food and toiletries, he said.

“I really didn’t know what to expect going to the city but I was amazed by home much the homeless are just like us and have just run into a rough patch in their life,” said Emma Young, a sophomore at Ridgefield High School.

“It was a last minute decision for me to join the run but I am so glad I did, it really makes me thankful for all that I have,” said RHS sophomore Kirsten Contreras after the run.

Project Heart is a group of teens organized through the Youth Ministry Program at St. Mary Parish in Ridgefield that seeks to make an impact in the local community through service. More information can be found at