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Residents of Sun City Carolina Lakes stepped up to the plate once again this year to support the Indian Land schools. The community’s Volunteers and Helping Hands Club ran a hugely successful back-to-school drive for Indian Land schoolchildren.
During an early accounting the weekend of the drive’s deadline, drive co-chair Clare McConaughay excitedly announced, “We have collected 100 book bags, so we have met that goal!”
But, of course, that was only part of the story.
“We also have 525 spiral notebooks, 277 boxes of 24-count crayons, and four brown paper grocery bags filled with glue sticks so far,” McConaughay said. “There is a big event tonight so we are keeping the collection boxes out,” she added, knowing that it would entice residents to donate even more to the cause.
McConaughay co-chaired this year’s annual school drive, along with Ann Cook. Janet Bershers and Jan Sellards, co-presidents of the Sun City Volunteers and Helping Hands, helped to organize it.
This year, Sun City resident Joe Wray was designated honorary chairman of the school supply drive. His wife, Teresa, who recently died, had planned to chair this year’s drive. In lieu of flowers or other memorials, Wray asked that donations be made to the Volunteers and Helping Hands Club in her name.
“The drive provides essential supplies needed for our children in Indian Land for their everyday education,” Bershers said.
“This is important as they are our country’s future,” Sellards added.
The supplies were carefully sorted and packed by a team of Sun City Volunteers according to requirements provided by the elementary school. Once this was done, vehicles were loaded and the goods delivered to the Indian Land Elementary School. They, in turn, provide supplies to the middle school when needed.
“We had five cars with 59 boxes, tubs and the brown paper bags full (of school supplies), which we presented to IL Elementary School counselors Jennifer Darcey and Carrie Smith,” McConaughay said after the drive wrapped up.
“Additionally, we gave them checks and gift cards totaling $699.”
“The Indian Land schools and their teachers are more than appreciative of our efforts,” Sellards said.
“There is a growing concern in Indian Land due to the economy and many families do not have the funds to purchase these school items,” Bershers said.
“We are very grateful for the generosity of our Sun City residents,” Bershers and Sellards said, speaking for the Volunteers and Helping Hands Club, “This is the sixth annual school supply drive and we know we are making a real difference in our community.
“We are also grateful to the members of the Volunteers and Helping Hands Club and all the hard work they do to support many worthwhile projects that we accomplish each year. It is very gratifying and we are always looking for new members,” they said.
Even though Sun City residents are feeling the effects of a depressed economy themselves, they felt a need to help the children so that they can become as successful as possible. As Sellards said, “They are our country’s future.”
“We are astounded again this year at the generosity of Sun City residents. Each donation is given out of love and concern,” McConaughay said.
“We wish the best school year ever for our Indian Land students and staff.”