Tri-State charity sponsoring drive for school supplies

EVANSVILLE, IN (WFIE) - There's still time to grab last-minute school supplies and make sure your kids have everything they need.

Happening Monday from 4-6 p.m., local charity Young and Established is sponsoring a school supply and backpack drive at the Central Library in Evansville.

Students in the community are welcome to come get a new backpack, school supplies and library card for free.

Last year, they gave out over 500 backpacks and school supplies to local students.

New to the drive this year, Jerald's Barbershop on E. Walnut Street has joined the effort and is giving out free back-to-school haircuts to participating kids until Noon on Monday.

This year, Young and Established Executive Director, Courtney Johnson decided to team up with the Central Library to help bridge the growing gap between technology in the classrooms and tech required to complete homework.

He says many students don't have access to WiFi or computers at home - both of which are offered at the library.

"They don't have books anymore they have these laptop things so if you don't have WiFi you can't do your homework. So, it's a lot more than just backpacks to me it was a whole thing as far as getting some of these kids access to WiFi and computers," Johnson said.

Besides equipping students with the tools they need to succeed, the drive is also about empowerment for both parents and kids.

"It can be pretty expensive there's a lot of things that you need and have to have. So that's just our goal is to just make it easier on the parents and the students."

Johnson said his favorite part is seeing the kids' and parent's faces when they receive the new supplies.

"I know I wasn't always excited to go back to school but some of these kids getting a backpack and getting school supplies I mean they're pumped up you can see it on their faces. You can see it on their parents' faces. They don't have to worry about basically getting school supplies and backpacks, that's something they don't have to stress about," he said.

Everyone is welcome at Monday's event. They will be giving out supplies until they run out. Johnson said it's best to get there early as there have been long lines in previous years.

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