Back-to-School Expo assists 87 families

Courtesy photo UNIT 1 SCHOOL District staff members volunteered for the annual Back-to-School Expo hosted by Help for Hope, Coal City Teachers Association and the school district. Those taking part in the event were able to secure school supplies and food courtesy of the teachers association.


In an effort to assure all students are ready to head back to class with the tools they need, the Unit 1 School District teamed with Help for Hope, the Coal City Teachers Association and Coal City Food Pantry hosted a back-to-school expo.
The Aug. 14 event served to provide area families with needed school supplies, sustenance and support.
Preparations for the event began on Aug. 11 as adults and student volunteers gathered to pack grade level supply bags, according to Cecilia DePersia, a social worker for the district.
As families lined up to take part in the event over 50 volunteers, many of them Unit 1 staff members, assisted in distributing school supplies and food items.
The teachers association funded a food truck from the Northern Illinois Food Bank. The money was generated from teachers who participated in the Jeans for Charity fundraiser throughout the school year.
The food truck assisted 87 families—422 adults and children. And, 139 bags of school supplies were distributed.
DePersia reports Help for Hope  will continue to hand out supplies to families in need with the items that remain.
Various community service organizations and resource agencies provided information to those in attendance. Taking part were: Help for Hope, New Beginnings, CLA, Pathway of Hope, We Care, Jumpstart/Easter Seals, Catholic Charities, Grundy Transit System, Northern Illinois Food Bank and  Assumption Church.
Also,  Hope Helps, Guardian Angel Community Services, Coal City Public Library District, Coal City Backpack Program, Grundy County Health Department, Girl Scouts, First Baptist Church, Disability Resource Center, MOPS, Joliet Junior College Morris Education Center and New Hope Presbyterian Church.