For the third year, the Northside Neighborhood House (NNH) will be collecting school supplies for children of families living north of the river. Last year, the NNH served 177 children through their Back-to-School Shop and anticipate serving more than 200 students this year.
“We kept hearing from our clients that school supply costs were really adding up, and many parents were struggling to provide needed supplies for their children,” said Heather Jones, Assistant Director of the NNH. “Low income families already have so many stressors, and we wanted to provide a hand up as children start the new school year.”
From now until the last week of July, community members can drop off school supplies at the main NNH office (211 Minor Street) or either of the organization’s thrift stores (209 Minor Street or 241 Signal Mountain Road). The NNH Back-to-School Shop is unique because parents get to bring their children in and ‘shop’ for items from their grade and school specific supply list.
“The goal of the Back-to-School Shop is to support area schools by equipping families to provide the supplies their children need to excel in the classroom,” Jones says. “We know that parents want their children to be prepared for school but don’t always have the resources to do so. When parents and kids shop together, it shows children that their parents really value education.”
Area schools also recognize the benefits of the Back-to-School Shop. “My students get a great feeling of self-worth when they have their own supplies,” says Emma Martin, Special Education Teacher at Red Bank Middle School. “We really depend on our parents to provide the needed school supplies for children to come to school ready to learn and succeed, and the NNH provides that for our families.”
The School Supply Drive offers a great opportunity for businesses, church groups and civic clubs to give back. For more information about how to get involved, contact Heather at firstname.lastname@example.org or 267-2217.