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Neighborhood Back-to-School Rallies provide backpacks to students in need

Published: Aug. 15, 2020 at 1:04 PM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) -

The start of the academic year is looking different than ever before, but some things are the same.

Each year the YMCA of Central Kentucky partners with Fayette County Public Schools to host the neighborhood back to school rallies. They give backpacks and school supplies to students in need.

During the school year, kids go through a lot of supplies. It’s a problem mom Kara Staed knows too well.

“All the advanced classes, and so he’s always needing paper and pencils because he’s always going through a lot,” Staed says. “During COVID, I’ve been limiting how much my kids go out, so I’ve been doing it myself.”

That's where the Back-to-School Rallies come in. The event provided backpacks filled with school supplies to anyone in need.

"I enjoy just being a partner in the community and just being a help to our neighbors," Andrew Newman says pastor at Eastland Park Church of the Nazarene.

Newman helped organize the event. He says COVID-19 has made it a little different. Past years entailed giveaways, food, and games.

"It has been 75% folks sticking around and enjoying the time with us there," Newman says.

This year, people drove up to get their backpacks. Plus, Newman says there were fewer sites taking part in the event... and fewer backpacks to give away.

Still, for kids, a Staed’s single backpack makes a difference.

"To be able to find something they can look though, they can kind of feel surprised, feel like they got something that mom didn't get them, you know they feel a little different towards it, it's more of a present to them, and it makes them feel good," Staed says.

This year all backpacks given away were assigned. The YMCA is working with Fayette County Public Schools to provide additional backpacks before the fall semester begins. For more information, you can reach out to your family resource center.

Copyright 2020 WKYT. All rights reserved.

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