Salvation Army’s Tools for Schools has county kids ready for class

Fairway Estates

A group of happy students have picked out their backpacks at The Salvation Army and are ready for school to start.

BY D’ARCY EGAN

When late August rolls around, it can be a stressful time for parents who are getting their kids ready for school. When the household budget is already very tight, expensive school supplies can upset the apple cart.

Helping out again this year has been The Salvation Army-Port Clinton Service Center, a gaggle of volunteers and lots of donations from around Ottawa County. On Friday and Monday, appointments were made by parents for the Tools for Schools program.

Director Maureen Saponari provides Paige and Seth Casto with backpacks and a hug.

“These parents are simply falling through a gap,” said Director Maureen Saponari. “If you have five kids, we’re talking about hundreds of dollars. This year, we’re providing school supplies for about 350 children in grades pre-kindergarten through high school.”

Many of the parents have jobs, but their budget struggles to provide the school supplies that are needed. They are often ineligible for other county programs because their income, said Saponari, so Tools for Schools is an invaluable program for them.

Amanda Fredrick of Port Clinton has a huge stack of backpacks ready at The Salvation Army-Port Clinton Service Center for their new owners.

For the kids, it begins with a new backpack, as well as grade level appropriate school supplies.

“This is a donation-funded program,” emphasized Saponari. To help with The Salvation Army fundraising, donations can be made to The Salvation Army, 1834 E. Perry St., Port Clinton, Ohio 43452. For more information, call Saponari at 419-732-2769 or email maureen.saponari@use.salvationarmy.org.

At the forefront with this year’s donations were the Ottawa County Board of Developmental Disabilities; Trinity United Methodist Church, Peace Lutheran Church, Ottawa County Republican Women, Debbie Hymore-Tester, CG Nail, Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Plant, Firelands Presbyterian Church, Trinity Lutheran Elmore, St. John Lutheran and a wealth of people and families.

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