When winter weather arrives, many groups come together to help the less fortunate. This is also true of veterans, many of whom may be in difficult financial situations, but for whom many organizations exist to get them the help they may occasionally need.

With freezing temperatures finally descending on New England after the warmest December on record, demand for warm coats is on the rise, according to a report from Providence television station ABC 6. To that end, Operation Stand Down Rhode Island is ready to help, with more than 100 coats and other winter necessities – like gloves, hats, blankets, and more – to give away to both low-income and homeless veterans.

The giveaway will take place this week at the Providence VA Medical Center, the report said. This is actually the culmination of a similar coat drive in November; that time, the group gave away some 200 coats, but received so many donations that it was able to hold this giveaway as well.

Operation Stand Down Rhode Island has been in operation with the purpose of helping veterans in need for more than two decades, starting soon after the first Gulf War conflict in the early 1990s, the report said. It highlights the fact that the assistance it provides is "a hand up, not a handout," which is one reason many veterans may feel shy about seeking help, financial or otherwise.

When difficult times arise, veterans should know there are many organizations – both private and governmental – to which they can reach out for help in a number of areas. The trick, though, is that they will need to know which are best suited to help them, so doing a little research will often go a very long way.