YORK COUNTY –Students at three York County elementary schools, and especially families, will have an easier time shopping for school supplies this coming academic year.
All the students need are backpacks.
Thanks to a donation from Crossroads Church, all school supplies is already covered at Grafton Bethel, Dare, and Yorktown elementary schools.
“It means the world and for our school and our teachers,” said Kristin Bolam, principal of Yorktown Elementary. “It takes a huge burden off of our families, too.”
Bolam said about 40% of students at Yorktown Elementary qualify for free or reduced lunches, and many teachers would also spend money out of pocket on school supplies.
The pandemic has also changed how classroom supplies is dispersed. Before, students could share scissors or glue sticks, but COVID-19 has brought a need for individualized supplies.
Before the donation, Dare Elementary School had been working or shortening supply lists for families by dipping into school funds. Over 25% of students at Dare Elementary qualify for free or reduced lunches.
“We realized there are families who are having tough times financially, so we’ve been doing what we can to relieve that burden,” Dr. Susan Hutton, principal of Dare Elementary School said.
Now the schools can save their pennies on school supplies.
“It’s really bigger than the schools,” said Crossroads Church pastor Aaron West. “At the beginning of year, we put together a plan to bless our community in a new way.”
The church started of with a goal to raise $50,000. The idea was that this money would go toward multiple projects, like building homes in Nicaragua and funding supplies for students there through the Yellow Backpack initiative from the Genesis Project, and of course, helping out the local schools.
By April, the church had successfully raised $100,000.
“We’ve never had a goal like this before, and to see how people rose up to the challenge was truly amazing,” said West.
Instead of helping one elementary school, the church was able to fund school supplies for three schools.
“One of the things we thought of when we started was, would the community miss us if our church closed its doors,” West said. “We wanted to make sure we did something that gave back to the community.”