Franklin Countys First News

Packs for Progress providing backpacks, school supplies for students

Courtney Frost and Sharon Cullenberg, holding backpacks at today's event.

Courtney Frost and Sharon Cullenberg, holding backpacks at today's event. (Photos courtesy of the United Way)

FARMINGTON - More than 400 students in the greater Franklin County area will receive supplies and a new backpack in advance of the 2015 school year, thanks to a partnership between three local organizations.

The United Way of the Tri-Valley Area, Farmington Rotary, and Stericycle Communication Solutions organize the program, which is designed to relieve some of the economic burden on parents and to help kids succeed in school. Packs for Progress, which is in its fourth year, stuffed 250 backpacks last year. This year’s goal was 400.

According to Lisa Laflin, executive director of the United Way of the Tri-Valley Area, 419 packs were stuffed at today's event, hosted by Stericycle and utilizing United Way staff and volunteers.

Additional packs were also being assembled for those that did not pre-register, Laflin said, thanks to the program's ample supplies due to the community's generosity.

In addition to the backpack, supplies given to students include 3-hole punched lined paper, 1-inch binders, pencils, pens, spiral bound notebooks, erasers, and composition books.

According to state records, 21 percent of Franklin County’s children live in poverty, and 55 percent of the county’s school-aged children qualify for free or reduced lunch, according to Maine Kids Count, 2013-14.

This program is made possible with the generous support of the following: L.L. Bean, ReEnergy Holdings LLC, TD Bank employees and patrons (Farmington Branch), Wiles Remembrance Centers, Gordon Excavating Inc., Otis Federal Credit Union, and Meader’s Construction.

Backpacks ready for distribution.

Backpacks ready for distribution.

Volunteers work to assemble and stuff backpacks with school supplies.

Volunteers work to assemble and stuff backpacks with school supplies.

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2 Responses »

  1. Awesome!!!

  2. Nice job to all involved

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