Fill the Bus and Filling Backpacks
The Georgetown Area Junior Forum held its 9th Annual “Fill the Bus” campaign this summer and distributed school supplies to more than 700 students last week.
In partnership with Walmart and with donations from many in Georgetown, they were able to provide school supplies at no cost to children attending GISD as well as neighboring district and private schools. Campaign chair Linda Simonson says “In the past we delivered the bulk supplies to the schools but this year we had a lot of help so we’re able to distribute them directly to the families, and could assist everyone who asked.”
The Georgetown Forum focuses its efforts on women and children and families in need. Simonson is a former teacher and says; “There are approximately 11,000 students in GISD and about half come from economically challenged homes. This is a passion project for us and having the kids do their own ‘shopping’ and pick out their own items is a special moment. It’s empowering for them because they don’t have to feel out of place on the first day of school; they’re prepared.”
Karen Crosby and The Locker were also on hand to help with shopping and distributed hygiene and personal items when asked; “Kids feel like they are on a level playing ground this way and we also hope families will recognize that this is a way to get help. The Locker is here year-round to provide necessary items and help of all kinds.”
The Boys & Girls Club provided storage space for the Forum to keep all the supplies prior to distribution so the group could enjoy the smiles and appreciation personally. “It’s extremely satisfying when a 6-year old hugs you and his father thanks you through tears,” said Simonson.
The Forum has many support events during the year and information can be found at GAJF.org.