POWHATAN – Community Life Church’s annual Operation School Supplies event will see several hundred Powhatan students receiving the recommended school supplies list for free this month regardless of whether they are attending school in person or virtually.
Organizers held the first giveaway on Sept. 2 and will hold the final giveaway from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 9 at the church, which is located at 2410 New Dorset Circle in Powhatan.
A busy hive of church volunteers run the school supplies giveaway, which has been possible every year since the 2017-2018 school year because of funds from the Powhatan County Department of Social Services, said Jennifer Davis, outreach coordinator for Community Life Church.
While the first years of the program were based on income guidelines, those restrictions were lifted this year because of the economic impact of COVID-19 and the extra need it has created, she said.
“There are parents who have been out of work, and not only are they food insufficient now but they also need help with their school supplies even with the children being virtual,” Davis said.
What the group was able to accomplish last week was wonderful, Davis said, although it would have been helpful to have more volunteers helping distribute the supplies.
Organizers hope the event will boost the morale of local families and that it will take some of the burden off of teachers “since they spend so much of their personal money out of pocket,” Davis said.
“This is our way of giving back to our teachers as well as the parents who can’t afford the cost of school supplies,” Davis said.
Community Life Church asks that people pre-register for the event. The registration form can be found online at https://forms.gle/FH3cu1kWAkWn73nN6.
If people cannot register in time, they can still come to the event. However, because of a high volume of families participating in the event, there may be a wait, Davis added.
Community Life Church also holds a free food pantry from 5 to 7 p.m. every Wednesday. Income guidelines have been suspended right now because of the pandemic.
For more information, visit https://www.communitylifechurchpowhatan.org/oss.
Laura McFarland may be reached at Lmcfarland@powhatantoday.com.