The goal is for each child to walk away with a backpack full of school supplies says North Park Friendship House community coordinator Laura Herridge.
Neighborhood families and members of the Hardin-Simmons University faculty and staff will gather at the HSU Brand Swimming Pool, August 4, 2012, for fellowship, food, and school supplies for the annual end-of-summer swim party. The party is hosted by the HSU-sponsored North Park Friendship House, part of three local friendship houses overseen by Connecting Caring Communities.
“It has been our tradition to collect school supplies from the HSU family to share with North Park kids,” says Herridge, “but this year we are planning a little twist.”
Herridge is asking each office or department at HSU to fill a backpack for a student in the neighborhood. “If each department could get together and purchase a backpack and fill it with supplies like notebook paper, pens and pencils, glue, markers, colored pencils, each child could leave the party with a brand new pack ready for school. Notes of encouragement for the coming school year would be great, too,” says the always enthusiastic Herridge.
In the past, as many as 120 neighbors have attended the party with about 50 grocery bags full of school supplies distributed to the children. HSU faculty and staff have been donating the back-to-school goodies each year since the Friendship House was established in 2005.
As Neighborhood Enhancement activities move into the new school year, service opportunities are available for HSU students, staff, and faculty. Among the offerings at the friendship house are children’s after-school programs, youth after-school programs, and neighborhood adult luncheons.
Herridge says, “We are continually blessed by being a part of the North Park neighborhood and by everything HSU does to support the friendship house.”
Backpack and supply donations are being collected in Moody Center, office 219, and should be there by noon, Friday, August 3. The pool party will be at the HSU pool next Saturday from 6:30-8:30 p.m.