A team effort giveaway helps local children prepare for school

By: Jael Pembrick - Staff Writer

LAUREL HILL — Scotland County Parks & Recreation and the Laurel Hill Community Center teamed up Friday for a giveaway that provided students with school supplies for the upcoming school year.

Children and parents were directed past a line of tables filled with donated school supplies from the community, while free hot dogs were also available. There were enough supplies for families to go through twice before the children went and played on the swings and slides.

Laurel Hill Community Supervisor Michael Alford came up with the idea and was inspired by the children.

“I’m always inspired by kids … they are going back to school and that’s what inspired me (to do this),” he said. “We have all races, creeds and colors and we need to come together as one.”

He added that the Community Center has a gym, auditorium, classrooms, and track that can be used by everyone.

Parents and grandparents looked relieved and happy that their children have new supplies. Local mom Amanda Dunn shared that, because her son has ADHD, her money goes to his needs and that the giveaway helps her in knowing her child has what he needs for school.

“With him being in pre kindergarten, its helping me financially but also helping him … not having to worry if he has enough paper,” Dunn added. “I feel this is a really good thing for Lauren Hill to do especially …”

She adds that she came from a poor family and foster home that did not care, so she wishes better for others.

“I don’t want any kid having to deal with that … at least the community actually cares about kids that are not fortunate to have a family to care,” Dunn said.

Local churches were involved with the event and Pastor Sammie Douglas of Higher Dimensions Ministries thought the event was a huge success.

“It’s about helping the children in the community and reaching out,” Pastor said. He offered prayer and jokes to comfort families that passed by him.

Retired teacher Althea Oaks volunteered at the event, helping students choose what they needed at the table for the school year.

“This saves the parents from having to purchase so much, and they do better in school when they feel prepared,” she said.

She says this event is a boost for their readiness as well as the morale in school.

“This is a boost and motivating factor… for their attitude, morale and everything.”

Jael Pembrick can be reached at 910-506-3169 or [email protected]





Jael Pembrick

Staff Writer