Cochrane FCSS offers school supplies
Rocky View Publishing
Cochrane’s Family and Community Support Services (FCSS) will be offering free school supplies to local families this month to help take away some of the financial burden that comes with going back to school.
The FCSS Resource Centre launched its fifth annual Back to School Backpack Program on Aug. 9 and expects to have 100 applicants this year. Last year, $2,700 was used to purchase backpacks and supplies for 82 children.
“The community is growing and times are lean,” said Cochrane FCSS Manager Susan Flowers. “This helps ease the burden.”
FCSS Resource Worker Terri Lauer coordinates the program and says a lot of families need a helping hand at this time of year.
“September can be a very stressful time for a lot of families because of the additional expenses associated with going back to school,” said Lauer. “For many families on a fixed income, providing school supplies can take away from their budget for food and clothing. This program helps offset some of those costs.”
Backpack recipients are chosen through applications and community referrals, and funds for the program come solely from donations.
“We have found the community to be very supportive,” said Flowers. “People are very generous when they know there are kids in need. This is a great example of how our community comes together to help each other.”
“We receive a great deal of support from local non-profits, community groups and residents,” said Lauer.
She said it is important that donations come in monetary form instead of actual school supplies.
“We prefer donations of money because there is a specific list of what the students need and we want to make sure each backpack has the appropriate supplies specific to each child’s school list,” she said. “Money allows us to be very specific and make sure each child has exactly what is expected from their school.”
For more information on the backpack program or to donate, contact the FCSS Resource Centre at 403-851-2255.