Backpack Giveaway Event A Success Yet Again
The sky was filled with thunder clouds and intermittent patches of blue, but Impact Church, site of the 10th Annual Backpack Giveaway, was filled with sunny faces and radiant smiles. Why? Because our High Desert kids were receiving fully stocked backpacks! And that wasn’t all—they were getting haircuts and manicures, socks and shoes, and reading and coloring books. And they were enjoying the bounce house, making crafts, visiting with firefighters and sheriffs, and checking out their cool vehicles.
The sanctuary was filled with children and their parents singing, playing games and listening to a message of hope from Impact Church’s Pastor Dane Davis.
The Family Resource Center was bursting with great information on local food pantries and support services, legal services, healthy eating and living options, criminal record mediation, and an immunization clinic sponsored by Rite Aid.
“The most amazing things happen when we let go and let God do his work,” said Bill Edwards, director of the mission. “We collaborated with new agencies this year and more than doubled the amount of backpacks distributed. The event was well attended and the community saw and heard the gospel of Jesus proclaimed and lived out!”
We were blessed by our partner non-profit, Happy Feet Sole to Soul, who received donations for 500 children’s shoes and 1,500 socks from Bombas Socks to give to students.
Nearly 100 volunteers served and over 600 backpacks for kids from pre-K through high school were distributed. This is the first year students from seventh to twelfth grade and children entering pre-school were given age-appropriate backpacks. This was due to a growing partnership with San Bernardino County School’s Desert Mountain Children’s Center, who matched our 1,000 backpacks with 1,000 more. We supported them at their event held on July 19 for secondary students and they supported us at our July 25th event for pre-school and elementary students.
We also received backpacks from Project Angel Tree for Prison Fellowship, other area non-profit partners, and Adelanto, Victor Valley and Lucerne school districts. In addition, we were able to support every pre-K through twelfth grade student in Trona that was affected by July 4th and 5th earthquakes with 350 backpacks.
“It was beautiful to see the parents and children get resources from so many organizations, and the kids getting backpacks, and all hearing the good news of Jesus,” said Jose Billenueva, a mission client who volunteered at the event. “I enjoyed seeing everyone get together and have fun and enjoy time with each other.”
All of us who partnered together for this event rejoice that our student neighbors and friends will start the school year strong with fully supplied backpacks and memories of a fun-filled day at Impact Church.