Community Support Sought to Provide School Supplies to 2,000+ Fairfax Area Children

June 30th, 2015

For Immediate Release
Contact: Lisa Whetzel, 703-273-8829

Note: Our Daily Bread changed its name to Britepaths on July 21, 2016

FAIRFAX, VA (June 30, 2015) – Fairfax-based charity Our Daily Bread (ODB) is seeking volunteers from the community to donate funds, backpacks and calculators to assist needy children who attend schools in the Fairfax County area as part of its Collect for Kids Back to School Program.

For the fifth year, ODB is collaborating with Kids R First, Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS), the Fairfax County Office of Public-Private Partnerships and a variety of local non-profit organizations and businesses to purchase high-quality school supplies at a deeply discounted rate through a partnership with the Collect for Kids program. The program will allow ODB to provide all the supplies a student needs for approximately $15 per student (and often $10 or less for elementary students), where it can often cost $40 or more per child when individuals purchase all the necessary supplies from retail stores.

ODB’s goal is to provide supplies for at least 2,000 qualified needy children who attend Fairfax High School, J.E.B. Stuart High School, the elementary and middle schools that feed into them, and some additional central Fairfax schools that have requested assistance. In 2014, ODB assisted 2,278 children in those schools. Given the overwhelming demand, the organization is hoping the community will give generously to help assist as many or more students who are in great need of school supplies.

Lisa Whetzel, Our Daily Bread’s Executive Director, said, “The numbers are staggering and continue to increase each year: 52,000 students in the Fairfax County Public Schools system are currently eligible to receive free or reduced-price meals. Their parents are struggling to put food on the table, and the prospect of choosing between food, rent and school supplies is stressful for them. We hope the community will respond generously to ensure that children whose families are in crisis are able to return to school this fall with all the tools they need to succeed in the new school year.”

Community members interested in helping may donate through Our Daily Bread’s secure web site, www.ODBFairfax.org, or mail a check to 4080 Chain Bridge Road, 2nd Floor, Fairfax, VA 22030. Donations of new backpacks (larger sizes are especially needed) and/or gently used scientific calculators are also welcome. They may be brought to ODB’s offices through August 7, Mondays through Fridays between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Backpacks and calculators may also be ordered and shipped directly to ODB through “wish lists” on Amazon.com and DollarDays.com. For more information on donating or sponsoring the program, contact Dawn Sykes 703-273-8829 or holiday@ODBFairfax.org or visit www.ODBFairfax.org.

Family Sports Challenge, July 18: Supporters may also make donations at the Family Sports Challenge on July 18 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Van Dyck Park in Fairfax City (3720 Old Lee Hwy, Fairfax, VA 22030). The event, sponsored by local non-profit Parties 2 Inspire, the City of Fairfax Parks and Recreation Department and XSport Fitness, will feature a number of sports challenges, including soccer, basketball and football; Jazzercise; family field events; a hula hoop contest and more, with prizes and medals. Admission is $5 per person and a suggested donation of a backpack or scientific calculator to benefit Our Daily Bread's Collect for Kids Back to School Program. Register by July 16 at www.parties2inspire.org or contact events@parties2inspire.org.

Our Daily Bread is grateful to local businesses and community organizations that are sponsoring the 2015 Collect for Kids Back to School Program: the Maximus Foundation, which provided a grant of $3,000 that will assist approximately 200 children; the Rotary Club of Falls Church; the Rotary Club of Annandale; NOVEC HELPS; and Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman. Organizations wishing to sponsor the Program may contact Dawn Sykes at 703-273-8829 or holiday@ODBFairfax.org.

Our Daily Bread is in its 31st year of providing assistance and a way forward for struggling individuals and families throughout the Fairfax County area. The organization relies on funding and volunteer support from the Fairfax community to provide supplemental food, financial assistance, financial mentoring and budget classes, an intensive Project BRIDGE program to foster long-term self-sufficiency, the Naomi Project to mentor at-risk new and expecting mothers, holiday assistance and back-to-school assistance. More information is available at www.ODBFairfax.org.

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