Bradenton church gives 150 backpacks, supplies to young students

Volunteers with Samoset Church of God are making sure families all over their community are...
Volunteers with Samoset Church of God are making sure families all over their community are well-supplied before the fall semester begins.(Shane Battis)
Published: Jul. 30, 2022 at 2:52 PM EDT
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BRADENTON, Fla. (WWSB) - Parents are getting their kids ready for the first day of school, checking off dozens of necessities before they step back into class. Lucky for them, they’re not doing it alone.

The Samoset Church of God in Braden hosted its “Back to School Bash” Saturday equipping families with everything they need ahead of the fall semester.

Volunteers gave out 150 backpacks, all of them stuffed with essential supplies like notebooks, rulers, glue sticks, colored pencils and crayons. It’s the second time the church has hosted the event and this time they went even bigger, spending more than $2,000 with the help of donations.

In addition to the backpacks, the event also offered kids free haircuts and a lunch.

“This helps out and makes their burden a little bit lighter,” Associate Pastor Gavin Campbell said. “And that’s what we’re trying to do at Samoset.”

The efforts, certainly appreciated by families crowding into the church on Saturday. Dozens of kids could be seen jumping for joy as they picked out a new bag and dug into the goodies inside.

Parents are also breathing a sigh of relief, knowing that at least some of their school shopping has been taken care of, although there’s still plenty more to do.

“It’s going to save me a bundle because I have another daughter, I have three daughters,” Kelsie Velazquez said. “So, altogether it’s probably roughly around $300-$400.”

The Samoset Church of God plans to host another back-to-school bash around the same time next year.

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