12.1.14: School supply donations top 3,800 pounds
12.1.14: School supply donations top 3,800 pounds
Posted on 12/01/2014

More than 11,000 pencils, 3,125 spiral notebooks, and 700 new backpacks are among $36,650 worth of school supplies donated this year by area businesses, service organizations, and individuals.



This is the ninth year that Communities In Schools of Puyallup (CISP) has partnered with the Puyallup School District to coordinate the drive for local students in need.



Jan Mauk, executive director of CISP, said the donations provide students with basic supplies to achieve in school.



Nearly 40 businesses, organizations, or groups supported this year’s effort by organizing a drive or offering to be a drop-off donation site, she said. Several of the businesses or groups have participated in each of the nine annual drives, while others have been consistent supporters for at least the past five years.



“The level of community involvement continues to increase year after year,” Mauk said. “We are so thankful for all of the donations and continued interest in serving students with basic learning tools, especially at the start of the school year.”



Costco, for example, has donated hundreds of backpacks every year for each of the past nine years. This year, the company donated a majority of the 610 new elementary backpacks collected during a two-week school supplies drive in August.



Red Canoe Credit Union has also been integral to the program’s success, Mauk said. For the fifth straight year, the company coordinated a “Fill the Canoe” school supply drive at its Puyallup locations and at numerous businesses and organizations throughout the community.



The drive brought in nearly 3,800 pounds of school supplies, and Red Canoe Credit Union matched donated supplies pound-for-pound.



In addition to the thousands of school supplies, other local companies, faith-based organizations, service clubs, and individuals contributed to the success of the drive by volunteering time to sort and inventory items sent throughout the district.



In a related effort to help students in need, Mauk said the Fred Meyer store in downtown Puyallup contributed more than 2,400 “Weekend Backpacks” — paper grocery bags filled with $5 worth of kid-friendly food purchased by customers.



The food bags, containing items such as pasta and sauce, granola bars, and canned fruit and vegetables, are given to students in need at Stewart, Sunrise, and Karshner elementary schools on Fridays to ensure they have food over the weekend.