Source Consulting was excited to be a part of Operation School Bell by providing the shipping of the school supplies to St. Kitts.
OPERATION SCHOOL BELL: Thanks to the best team ever, the 2019 Operation School Bell has been ringing loud and strong! With a week to go before public distribution is completed, we have distributed over 480 backpacks to students from over 176 families! When public distribution is completed, we will divide any remaining backpacks among Social Services and schools for any students who fell through the cracks or for family emergencies later in the year.
From generous donations to purchasing to shipping to assembly to distribution (so much in that one word!), people and organizations have stepped in and stepped up at just the right time and in just the right way. Our relationships with the Department of Social Services and Community Development and Mickey’s HOPE have helped provide the best assurance that we are reaching as many of the students from families in need as feasible. The Ministry of Education’s flexibility and responsiveness has been key to identifying new products and approaches to benefit students across the island. And our volunteers have exceeded all expectations with their ‘git r done’ approach!
As you’ll see in the attached video, the hands-on work started with the receipt of bags and bags of backpacks, shipments of composition books and supplies, stored at the wonderful Matheson House, home of the Brimstone Hill Society which has again made space available for our project. They are not only gracious hosts, but part of the team with helping and supporting in so many ways. We have had the best volunteer team and were able to get all pencil cases and 600 backpacks ready prior to our first distribution. While there were some small hiccoughs along the way, this is the first time we have had everything in house ready to distribute prior to our official ‘opening day’! Social Services continues to work to provide information on families qualified to receive supplies and is ever ready to address specific situations as they arise.
As you see the pictures of some of the children and families, I hope you can feel their excitement. One little boy, upon picking out his backpack, sat on the floor and immediately opened it exclaiming over the contents! In some of the family pictures you will see very young ones with string packs. We give a coloring book and crayons to the pre-schoolers who come with their family so they don’t feel left out. And the very special Harper’s string packs are reserved for our Cotton Thomas (special ed) students who get a few things so they, too, feel a part of the back-to-school excitement even though they don’t have specific supply requirements (items are provided directly to the school for classroom use). This year we are also setting new records for college backpacks, in which we provide just a few basic supplies. It is a natural area of expansion for us as we want to encourage and support students who are advancing through higher education.
It takes all our parts working together to produce these results and I thank you each and every one and hope you’ll join us again for an even greater 2020 Operation School Bell!
– Connie Jaynes, Operation School Bell