Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Southwire Prepares for Back to School Fair

Thousands of people will come to Southwire’s parking lot this weekend to accept free school supplies during the seventh annual Back to School fair. More than 4,000 bags of supplies are expected to be distributed between 9 a.m. and noon Saturday.

“When we started this, we noticed at that time the schools were asking parents to provide more and more of the supplies,” said Southwire spokesman Gary Leftwich. “It’s another way for Southwire to give back to the community.”

In an attempt to help the community, Southwire started the Back to School fair seven years ago. Southwire and other corporate sponsors provide the supplies and the volunteers to distribute the bags.

Families can get a maximum of three bags of supplies for the children in the family. People wait in line, but within 45 minutes most people have received their items.

Families from all over west Georgia east Alabama come to the fair, and Leftwich said people from more than 190 different schools attended last year.

In addition to the school supplies, children can receive basic vision screenings for free. Kroger will hand out fruit and Carrollton City Schools food service workers will distribute nutritional information.

The bags are separated into age groups, for younger children and for older students. The bags contain about $15 worth of supplies like hand sanitizer, notebooks, scissors and pencils.

Leftwich said the list is based on the recommendations of the local school systems every year.

Every year, parents thank the volunteers for the supplies — one less thing the parents need to worry about, he said.

“This really helps students prepare for school, but it really helps the parents relieve a bit of stress on providing for their kids,” Leftwich said. “They already have to provide clothes and shoes.”

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