Studentsget a full pack, thanks to local shoppers

Published on Thu, Sep 1, 2005 by Jack Kintner

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Students get a full pack, thanks to local shoppers

By Jack Kintner

Grocery shoppers at the Blaine Cost Cutter once again dug a little deeper at check stands to purchase school supplies for needy Blaine students. “We put together five and ten dollar sacks of supplies, plus backpacks priced at $12 this year, for people to buy,” said the program’s co-originator, Service Counter Manager Bobbie Berry.

Berry and co-worker Sue Schulte will make up 20 bags of school supplies at a time with such things as paper, erasers, pencils, rulers, crayons, glue and pens, as well as more expensive equipment for older kids. When the large bin at the south end of the check stands fills with bags and packs, the donated supplies are taken to the Family Service Center for distribution.

“I don’t have figures for this year yet,” said Berry, “but I expect to break last year’s record.” In the eight year history of the program almost 300 sacks of supplies and 60 backpacks have been distributed, and each year, more donations have been collected than the preceding year. Berry said that collections will continue for another month or so even though distribution began with the opening of the school year.

Distribution is handled by the Blaine Family Service Center, upstairs in the middle school gym. Coordinator Andrée Marcus and Larissa Dhanani plan to be open Monday through Thursday, “although we’re still working out the hours,” Marcus said, “so call us at 332-0740 to check.”

On Fridays the center will be offering a class for new parents and infants up to 10 months old called “Baby Connections” and taught by Francie Gass, R.N.. The informal drop-in sessions run from 10 a.m. until noon.