‘See the children, see what they need’: Back to School Donation Drive ends Friday, supplies needed more than ever

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MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – Friday is the final day to donate school supplies for News13’s Back to School Donation Drive.

All supplies collected will be donated to Help 4 Kids/Backpack Buddies in Myrtle Beach.

News13 partnered with Lazarus Entertainment Group among other businesses from Florence to Myrtle Beach in a week-long effort to collect as many supplies as possible.

Christina Watts, marketing director for Lazarus Entertainment Group, said she’s excited to see the donation box at Myrtle Waves Water Park getting so full.

“It warms my heart so much to see the people in our community also giving back, helping us and helping ‘Help 4 Kids’ and ‘Backpack Buddies’,” she explained. “This community that we have is a wonderful one. So, it’s always nice to focus on the good in the midst of such – a kind of a dark time.”

Carolina Trust is one of the businesses that partnered with News13 and they set up an online monetary donation allowing for more ways people can help. “We have a big heart for helping kids,” said August Mize, brand ambassador for Carolina Trust. “We are in the schools all the time for Teacher of The Year, I’m a Buddy Not a Bully, so it made sense for us to do whatever we can to play a role and help the kids adapt back into classroom learning.”

During the school year, Backpack Buddies provides about 3,000 bags of food each week to kids and their families in Horry County.

Barb Mains, lead volunteer at Backpack Buddies, said the need for donations is greater this school year than ever.

“There’s that many children that need food on the weekends and those same children will need school supplies,” she said with concern.

She believes new learning options shouldn’t stop people from donating, but this year there’s been a drop in school supply donations.

“I pray that people will look beyond and see – the children – see what they need,” she said.

Large brown bags of non-perishable food items are stacked high like a mountain compared to the one box of supplies the organization has received so far. Mains said even more families are depending on them since the coronavirus pandemic.

“A lot of people are laid off. I think they call it furloughed, but they lost their jobs and they can’t even pay their rent – they sure can’t buy a book bag and school supplies for kids,” Mains explained.

All of the donations received through the back-to-school drive will be dropped off at Backpack Buddies and taken to families and schools in Horry County.

Those in need of assistance can reach out to Help 4 Kids on Facebook or call (843) 651-4130. Help 4 Kids/Backpack Buddies is accepting food and school supply donations throughout the year.

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