Drive for Supplies Collects School Supplies for Needy Families

July 23, 2009
MCPS Schools Collect nearly 15,000 Pounds of School Supplies for a Second Straight Year

ROCKVILLE, MD—The annual Drive for Supplies press conference on July 27 will celebrate the collection of 14,480 pounds of reusable school supplies that will be made available to students and families who need them. This is the second year in a row that this many supplies have been collected, up from 9016 pounds three years ago. The event will take place at Richard Montgomery High School on Monday, July 27, at 10:00 a.m. Among the scheduled speakers are Shirley Brandman, president of the Board of Education; Timothy Hwang, student member of the Board of Education; Dr. Jerry D. Weast, superintendent of schools; Louise Newcomer, executive director of Learn Shop, Inc.; and Theresa Tesoni, from the Governor’s Office on Service and Volunteerism.

This year, 62 schools, along with several Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) offices and local businesses, participated in collecting supplies that include paper, books, notebooks, pens, pencils, and more. Many students earned Student Service Learning (SSL) hours over the summer by sorting, boxing, and weighing the donated supplies.

Drive for Supplies, now celebrating its tenth anniversary, is a collaboration between Learn Shop, Inc., and MCPS. The program not only teaches students the importance of recycling and reducing landfill waste, but also teaches them that they can have a direct impact on communities by donating their reusable school supplies to local, national, and international schools and organizations.

The project has grown steadily since it began in MCPS in 2000. In 2002, Drive for Supplies collected 5,320 pounds of reusable school supplies and utilized 14 volunteers to help sort. This year's 14,480 pounds utilized 208 volunteer helpers.

Drive for Supplies was formed in 1999 by Kevin and Louise Newcomer, founders of Learn Shop, Inc., a nonprofit organization based in Wheaton, Maryland.

MCPS schools, individual families, and nonprofit agencies may pick up free supplies for students who need them at the Drive for Supplies celebration on July 27 at Richard Montgomery High School, beginning at 11 a.m. through 8 p.m. The school also will be open to distribute supplies from 10 a.m. until 12 noon on July 28.

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