The Penticton Wide School Donation Drive has commenced for its second year, and organizer Andrea Fossum is building off of the momentum the initiative had last year.
Similar to last year, Fossum will be collecting cash donations and supplies for all grades and schools in the Penticton region, which she will divide and disperse when the drive ends on Aug. 31. All cash donations will be used to purchase needed items based off of the supplies lists each school assembles for their students to ensure they are prepared for the upcoming school year.
“Last year we were able to raise $3,000 worth of school supplies thanks to a small group op awesome people within the community of Penticton,” states a Facebook fundraiser also raising funds to contribute to the drive.
Fossum told the Western News last year that she started this drive when she learned about B.C.’s current child poverty rates, and hopes that by providing the necessary school items that there will be one less stress in these children’s lives.
“About 20 per cent of children in B.C. are living in poverty, and I’m finding that many parents are struggling with the high cost of living. So even those who don’t quality as low-income are still facing challenges,” said Fossum in an earlier interview. “When all of your income goes into rent and bills, there’s little left over for food or clothing or things like school supplies.”
Fossum said she received an excellent response from the schools after distributing the supplies she gathered last year. She said she has no goal or expectations this year, just to be able to help as many students, parents and teachers as she can.
“I had a couple math teachers thank me for the scientific calculators (I provided), so that was awesome,” said Fossum. “The school ended up putting barcodes on them so they could be circulated in the school throughout the year.”
Cash donations and school supplies items can be dropped off at Sprott Shaw College, located at 2603 Skaha Lake Rd., or at the Western News office at 575 Main St. Those interested in staying up to date with how the drive is going and what supplies are needed are asked to visit the Facebook group Penticton Wide School Donation Drive.
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