U.K. Self-Storage Operator Offers ‘Elf Storage,’ U.S. Facilities Hold Holiday Coat Drives

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'Elf storage' promotion from Dainton Self Storage.Self-storage operators around the world continue to find meaningful and creative ways to serve their communities during the Christmas season. One storage company in the United Kingdom is offering space to hide gifts, while U.S. operators partner with nonprofit groups to clothe the needy.

Dainton Self Storage, which operates eight facilities in Southwest England, is offering free “elf storage” for holiday gifts that are either too large to hide at home or customers just want to keep away from prying eyes. The company has reserved one unit at each of its facilities for residents to use on a first-come, first-served basis. The promotion is open to all residents, not just existing customers.

"We thought a secret Santa storage unit would be a perfect way of introducing people to the benefits of having access to self-storage, so we have set aside a special container at each of our Westcountry depots," said Shaun Duncan, Dainton's operations director.

Participants can use one bike space or fill an extra-large box with as many presents as they can fit. The box is then sealed and stored in the designated unit. Presents can be picked up on or before Dec. 24.

In the United States, Storage Post Self Storage has partnered with Jersey Cares for the group’s statewide effort to collect warm winter coats for those in need. Both of Storage Post’s New Jersey facilities are serving as public collection and drop-off sites for donations, and the company will use its moving trucks to deliver the coats to the Jersey Cares’ warehouse.

Participants are asked to bring freshly laundered and gently used coats to Storage Post's Linden or Jersey City locations. Collection boxes will be prominently displayed in the front offices throughout the coat drive. Only coats will be accepted as donations.

"This year, more than ever, we need to spread the warmth to the people of New Jersey. [Hurricane] Sandy has left people without homes, without electricity and in direct need of assistance," said Jack Chaney, Storage Post chief operating officer. "These coats can make all the difference for New Jersey families and individuals during the winter weather."

This is the 17th year Jersey Cares has operated its coat drive. The organization encourages civic involvement and also coordinates programs for park revitalization, statewide days of service, and school supply drives.

Headquartered in Atlanta, Storage Post has locations in Georgia, Louisiana, New Jersey and New York.

Storage Village, a self-storage operator in Maryland and Virginia, reported a record coat-collection drive this year, totaling 104 coats, 19 sweaters, two blankets and 107 pounds of additional clothing for residents in the communities it serves.

All five of the company’s locations partnered with a local nonprofit group to make sure the coats benefit those in their community. “Storage Village is grateful to work with our community to help keep our neighbors in need warm this winter,” said Storage Village President L. Goldberg.

The company’s annual coat drive is one of several ways it gives back to the community. During the year, all employees volunteer at least eight hours per month at a nonprofit of their choice. Storage Village is also hosting a Toys for Tots Drive at each of its locations.

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