GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — Parents and their students lined up outside Wayne Hardee Law Firm in Greenville Saturday morning to get a backpack filled with all of the back-to-school essentials.
Car after car, backpack after backpack. Hours later and over 1,000 new bookbags were in the hands of students for the upcoming school year.
“This is truly a blessing,” said Amelia Pledger.
For parents like Pledger, the giveaway was a much-needed boost.
“During this time of the pandemic, we needed some relief and some help,” Pledger said. “This will definitely take the burden off of families and allow them to do other things they need to focus on.”
Pledger lined up to get backpacks for her seven kids. And she was there among many other parents who were thankful for the supplies.
“We started at 11 but we had people lined up at 9:30,” said Wayne Hardee, sponsor of the giveaway. “So, there is a lot of need for it. Our goal is to get folks who need the book bag help for their kids. They’ve been very appreciative, very heartfelt.”
Wayne Hardee Law Firm sponsored the event to get kids started on the right foot this school year.
“We decided after COVID this was a great time to really give back and go big,” Hardee said. “It’s a small way to give back. There have been some really excited kids today. “
Even for people like Emery Simmons, a University of North Carolina football player who signed autographs during the event, knows how important it is to get kids this help for the classroom.
“It’s given us a chance to give back to our communities and help out others other than ourselves,” said Simmons.
Along with their new backpacks, students will also be able to use the school supplies inside.
“There’s notebooks, pads, pencils, glue, scissors, crayons,” Hardee said.
Pledger said these materials will help her kids focus on their schoolwork.
“By not having to worry about going to school and being different because they don’t have things like other children,” she said.
Going into the school year, Hardee had one piece of advice for the kids.
“Listen to your teachers so you can advance,” he said. “The future is wide open.”
The sponsors and volunteers hope these backpacks will help students to have a great school year.