MEDFORD, Ore. – Monday morning lines wrapped around the St. Vincent DePaul dining hall as families waited for their free school supplies giveaway.
Some families gathered as early as 7a.m. for the kick off at 10a.m. Event planning began in March and more than 125 volunteers spent the last three days prepping. School supplies is for students in kindergarten through 12th grade in Jackson County for families in need, on assistance or in a financial crisis.
“My dad just got through cancer surgery so we can’t really afford it, so we needed school supplies,” 8th grader Trenton Long said.
Kids receive a bag of supplies, which are organized by grade level, and can pick the color of their backpack. Supplies include highlighters, colored pencils, binders, spiral notebooks, notebook paper and more. Proof of parent and student identification is required.
The event is taking place all week long from 10a.m. to 2p.m. and also Tuesday and Thursday evenings from 5p.m. to 7p.m. St. Vincent DePaul is located at 2424 North Pacific Highway in Medford.
Last year, St. Vincent De Paul gave away 4,100 bags of school supplies. Volunteers are hoping to beat that record. The giveaway was made possible through money from grants and donations from individuals and local organizations.
“Every student needs to have the same start,” volunteer Laura Grosz explained. “If they don’t feel like they’re equal to other students, it’s difficult for them to succeed in school. So we want to give every student the same first start.”