Local Church Gives Away 400 Backpacks

Local Church Gives Away 400 Backpacks
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In the days to come, many an area kid will be heading back to school. That, of course, has and will entail plenty of back-to-school shopping. The costs for supplies seem to grow every year, which can be stressful for many families.

Enter those who step in to help.
More than 400 people line the Carthage First Church of the Nazarene parking lot, mixed in are kids ready to go back to school, some not, and parents prepared to stock up on all of the supplies needed for the school year.

For some this time of year is stressful.
“It’s kind of overwhelming,” says Carthage resident Jessica Ball.
“Hectic, very hectic. Expensive,” says Joplin resident Alisha Williams.
But inside, a backpack offers some relief. The church has stocked backpacks with paper pencils tissues and more. They’re giving all 430 away to those who need them
“Going back to school is hard for all families and especially maybe some that have more than one kid or maybe not as many incomes at the home and so we just really felt like the Lord led us to this event to reach lots of families in the Carthage and surrounding area,” says Pastor Dustin Ledford.
Alisha Williams has kids going into kindergarten and 6th grade, along with several nieces and nephews. They’ll get 4 of the 8 backpacks they need.
“It’s a relief to get a backpack full of a good handful of school supplies that helps us out tremendously,” she says.
According to the National Retail Federation, this year across the country more than $4 billion will be spent on supplies like paper pens and pencils. On average parents say they spend about $100 for each of their kids.
“Back to school is always tough because then as soon as school starts you have the school pictures and that stuff so we always have to try and find the sales for the school supplies,” says Williams.
400 kids left better prepared, and excited, to start the school year.
Other area organizations and churches are helping area kids. There’s a backpack giveaway scheduled for Saturday morning at 10 at Calvary Church of the Nazarene off Connecticut in Joplin.