Our children in need

Published 10:00pm Wednesday, June 11, 2014

by Wendy Thomas
Jim arrived unexpectedly at his mother’s doorstep with nothing but the clothes on his back.  He didn’t even have a toothbrush.
Jim’s mother, an Outreach client, had been struggling to support herself since her husband left with their 12 year old son 11 months ago.
In the midst of this most recent abrupt life change, Jim had to re-enroll in his sixth grade class and face the classmates he had reluctantly said goodbye to last year.
Trying to catch up with an unfamiliar curriculum was hard enough for Jim, but nearly impossible without clothes, money for lunch or school supplies.
Working with his school guidance counselor, Outreach supplied Jim with a new book bag filled with school supplies, clothes, shoes and a new coat.  Jim also had access to the school supply closet that Outreach maintains in each county school throughout the year.
Finally, Outreach enrolled him in the Feed-A-Kid program, which provided Jim with a pack of nutritious food each weekend.
His mother said, “I was so happy to have my son home, but without the help of Outreach, Jim would never have been prepared to start school the next day. I am so grateful to everyone who made this happen for us!”
Outreach is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization founded in 1991. The organization’s mission is to provide compassionate assistance to Polk County residents who are unable to provide for their basic life needs.
For more information on Outreach programs, to volunteer or to contribute, contact Carol Newton, Executive Director, at 828-894-2988 or by email at carol.newton@tboutreach.org.

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