Access distributes nearly 400 backpacks

By Joseph Slacian

Nearly 400 school children from around Wabash County will be returning to school over the next two weeks with new backpacks and other supplies, thanks in part to The Access Youth Center and the community.

The Access’ annual school supply program distributed 392 backpacks filled with various supplies on Thursday and Friday, Aug. 2-3.

“It’s been an exceptional year,” Access Executive Director Liz Hobbs said. “We’ve had wonderful volunteers and groups come in. The kids and their families are excited to get the things they need for school.”

There were many happy faces leaving the facility at xx W. Canal St. after receiving their new backpacks.

“We Just had a little guy here hugging his shark backpack saying, ‘It’s sharks. It’s sharks.’” Hobbs said. “There were lots of happy faces. A few tears in the eyes of volunteers and parents alike because it’s just kind of the nature of this that it’s wonderful to see the kids so excited.”

Access volunteers distributed about 240 backpacks in 45 minutes on Thursday. The remainder were given out Friday morning and Friday evening during First Friday activities.

Any remaining supplies will be distributed on an as-needed basis.

“If the schools contact us and say they have a kid who needs a backpack, if we have it we’ll give it to them,” Hobbs said. “If we have anything left and a kid comes in new to the school system, they can contact us. If we have it in the building, we’ll give it out.”

She noted that the program would not be possible if not for the generosity of the Wabash County community.

“We don’t write grants for this,” Hobbs said. “We really believe that this is a neighbor helping neighbor opportunity. As always, the Wabash community stepped up.

“We can’t believe we get to be a part of this, and also, we get to see so many people come in and give their time. It’s just a wonderful thing to be a part of.” 

Posted on 2018 Aug 07