Summer is quickly drawing to a close and the 2013-14 school year is just on the horizon. While many students may be disheartened by the abrupt end to their free time, others are more concerned about whether or not they will have paper, pens or even clothes for the new school year.
“It’s a real problem,” said Jessie Burton, who works with the Blaine school district’s Family Service Center. “We’re seeing a lot of need.”
Burton said that the school district is working to alleviate those concerns by soliciting donations from the community. It’s a service they have provided for many years, but the need continues to grow.
She said that even though school is still a few weeks away, they are already anticipating an increase this year in the number of students they will serve. “I’ve already had phone calls from a number of families we’ve never worked with before,” she said. “We’re really going to need a boost.”
Last year, the center provided school supplies for 250 students.
“We see a big push for supplies this time of year,” she said. “And right now, we’re so low on basic supplies like pencils and paper.”
Supplies are distributed to students in grades K-12, and anyone who is low income and needs school supplies is welcome to get them from the Family Service Center. Burton said the center’s biggest need is for pencils, notebook paper, backpacks, three-ring binders of any size, colored pencils, glue sticks and composition notebooks.
“Backpacks are really expensive items,” Burton said. “We have a lot of need for those to be donated, because the families can’t afford them.”
Donations are being taken Monday through Friday at the school district office. The district office will be the only distribution point this year, to streamline the process.
The school supplies will be distributed to families on Tuesday, August 27, from 9:30 a.m. to noon.
If you have gently-used clothing that you wish to donate for kids K-2, it can be delivered to Kathy’s Kloset at the Blaine Primary School.
Kathy’s Kloset will be open again to primary students during the week that school resumes, and offers a resource for primary students in need by providing clothes, toiletries and school supplies.
For more information call Burton at 360/332-0740.