August 22, 2007 CAPAC — When the pocketbook just can't stretch enough to get all the school supplies children need, Women's Initiative of the Community Foundation of St. Clair County is there to lend a hand.
On August 24, they'll give away backpacks filled with all the classroom necessities at the Capac Elementary School from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. as part of their annual Back to School program.
"This is the second year we will be giving backpacks out in Capac," Susan Ellerkamp of the foundation said.
"The project is supported all through community donations."
Ellerkamp said it costs $13 to purchase the backpack and fill it with supplies. The foundation has received donations of money and supplies from residents and businesses, including a Curves for Women supplies drive. Capac State Bank, the Four County Community Foundation and Port Huron Hospital are sponsoring the Capac event. Chase Bank and Lasalle Bank are some of the top corporate sponsors.
In addition, about 300 volunteers help prepare and hand out the bags.
The giveaway is intended for low-income families but the only paperwork participants must show is proof of residence in St. Clair County.
Children, from preschool through middle school, are eligible and must be present to receive a backpack. About 550 bags will be distributed on a first-come, first-serve basis.
A mobile food pantry will be handing out food items, Community Mental Health will be offering free car seat inspections and the Salvation Army will distribute clothing vouchers.
Two Spanish-speaking interpreters will also be present for the day, Ellerkamp added.
The foundation will also hand out backpacks in Algonac, Port Huron and East China this week.
Donations are still being taken for the giveaways.
For more information, contact the foundation at (810) 984-4761.
In September, the Back to School program will be featured at a national conference for community foundations in a session profiling unique and successful events.