(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) St. Joseph usually steps up in a big way to help area kids get the supplies they need for back-to-school. This year, even though questions loom on how kids will go back, they are still going to need supplies.
One local non-profit organization hosts an annual 'Back 2 School Shopping' program to help families and kids get all the gear they need all for the price of just a smile. But this year Grace House is short of school items as businesses aren't stocked on supplies due to the pandemic.
"So we've been ransacking everywhere we can get them. We're still in short need of supplies," said Ruth Costello, owner of Grace House. "We need scissors, we need markers, we need filler paper, notebook paper is very hard to find. And composition notebooks. So if anybody's out there and they have a heart for a child, that would be great. We would love it."
Last year the 'Back 2 School Shopping' event served over 1000 kids, giving them clothing, a backpack full of supplies, and much more. Grace House is unsure of how many people will come this summer, but they know the impact they have on kids that are going back to school.
"We want them all to look great in the classroom," said Costello. "And to be proud of how they look and what they have. So we decided we would give them clothing, backpacks, toothbrush, toothpaste, new underwear, new socks, some shoes are available, and the whole idea is to have that first day be a good experience."
Grace House will put in new procedures for those shopping due to COVID-19. A mask will be required for all teenagers and adults. One family will be allowed in the building at a time. The event starts on Tuesday, July 14 at 6:30 A.M. and will last for a couple of weeks until all supplies are gone.