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Each year, the United Way of the Ozarks organizes hundreds of people to volunteer at various non-profits around Southwest Missouri for the “Day of Caring.” KSMU’s Emma Wilson reports.
Today at the Salvation Army on South Campbell children and parents line up to receive free backpacks filled with school supplies as well as vouchers for new shoes, haircuts and clothing. 60 or 70 volunteers are wearing “United Way: Day of Caring” t-shirts. Major Claire Grainger says that the “Day of Caring” benefits everyone involved, especially the children of the community.
“It’s so important for kids to go back to school on a level playing field, that they’ll have their new backpack, they’ll have their new crayon box, they’ll have their new pencils and a new pair of shoes.”
Grainger says that 262 families with almost 600 children signed up to receive back-to-school items from the Salvation Army this year. Patricia Mayfield was there with her children. She has come here for their school supplies for the past four years.
“I have no income right now and anything helps, everything helps. They’re a blessing, they’re a blessing”
The United Way works with local companies to gather up the nearly 1600 volunteers that work on the Day of Caring each year. Again, Grainger.
“I just think it’s a great opportunity for a lot of people to get involved, people have been involved for weeks and weeks because they’ve been doing drives to raise money for us to buy the backpacks and pay for the shoe vouchers and things.”
The volunteers organized for the Day of Caring make it possible for local non-profits to ramp up their efforts right when many families need help the most.
For KSMU News, I’m Emma Wilson.